Yeah sorry guys.  I wish I had better news for you.  But this is not it.  God has other plans.  I will grieve the loss of being able to see a blend of myself and my husband in my child.  I know it’s going to be tough, but I truly believe that we’ll get to hold our child one day.

Thanks for all the love.

Now I have to go and focus on the rest of the work day.

MicroblogMondays: Beta Day


Today is beta day.  Fourteen days past 2 day transfer.  Sixteen days past ovulation.

It also marks the day we find out if a child genetically linked to me will be a possibility in nine months, or if this is the end of one journey and the beginning of the next journey.  There is a sense of finale.

It feels huge to me.

I have been very calm and at peace, except for that one Friday morning.  And then Sunday night, I was a little more nervous, but nothing debilitating.  Overall, my emotions are as good as can be for someone in her two week wait.

I will go in today at around 8:30am to get my blood drawn.  I hope that my nurse will call me late morning or early afternoon.  She wrote me last week answering my question and saying “Fingers crossed to share good news with you!”

I am sure I will be increasingly anxious today.  But it’s okay.  I will accept it one way or the other.

Thanks so much for everyone’s prayers.  I feel very loved as we embark on our next journey, whether towards parenthood or donor egg cycles.

Will I be opening this tonight?


We will find out soon.

Almost Caved, but Said No to POAS

I almost caved.  Almost.

I woke up Friday morning feeling little anxious.  It was the first time I felt this way since the two week wait began.  All the so-called “pregnancy symptoms” all had disappeared.  Not that I felt pregnant before, but the extreme exhaustion, the abdominal tugging, and the whole waking up in the middle of the night got me thinking that I probably was pregnant.  When these symptoms were no longer felt, I panicked a little and had an urge to pee on one of my four FRER.  I had already gone to the bathroom once after waking at 4am.  When we got up at 5:30am for bootcamp, the pee that I was holding was second morning urine.  However, Bob was a little upset that I went crazy on him the night before.  Yup.  I was unreasonably emotional the night before, which made us go to bed late.  He woke up groggy and tired.  We would’ve had enough sleep had I not acted in a crazy way.  Since he was a little upset, I really didn’t want to ruin everyone’s morning by testing and risking a BFN.  I sat there in the bathroom with ten thousand thoughts moving fast in my head.  To test, or not to test?  To test, or not to test?  It was a tough decision for me.  Last year we had our beta on 13DPO.  Friday was 13DPO.  In my head, if we have a chemical pregnancy this time, 13DPO would be a good day to test.  However, getting a potential BFN so early in the morning would not go very well with Bob’s mood that morning.  You see my struggle here?  So I just let it all go.  The one thing that would make POAS happen that morning went down with the flush.  Bob walked in and saw the look on my face.  I told him what I did.  He said, Oh if you decided to test, I am okay with it.  Well, buddy, it was too late now.

On my way to work, I still couldn’t shake that anxious feeling.  And I really hated it.  I was again a little panicky that I no longer felt the so-called “symptoms”.  My mind was definitely doing tricks on me.  I know it is not abnormal to feel this way.  I totally think that it being 13DPO had something to do with my feelings.  I had to share with someone, but I was busy all morning.  Finally at noon, I chose to talk to the one person I knew would definitely talk me out of testing.  My friend M is always against testing and all for waiting until beta day.  She said, “I always ask, ‘What will annoy me more?  Knowing I didn’t win the lottery now.  Or enjoying my weekend with hope and then killing it on Monday.'”  I told her that I would want to know if I had a chemical, to which she answered, “The blood draw on Monday will tell you that.” She also told me that I was not reacting to cues from my body but to the cues from my mind.  And she is right.  It is all in my head.  And then she said, “At this point, your body can’t tell you if you are or are not pregnant.  I know you want to think you can tell, because sometimes cats can tell.  But you’re not a cat, and even cats wouldn’t know yet.” Hahaha.  I love her.  What she said next sealed the deal for me.  She said,

“What you’re feeling about whether you are or aren’t pregnant at this point has more to do with your history of pregnancy and your thwarted hopes, the fear of daring to dream that this could be the time, than anything your body is actually doing.”

You know, I have been doing something crazy.  Pregnancy is associated with something called “slippery pulse“.  The previous week on 6DPO, my acupuncturist felt my pulse and told me that it was strong and slippery.  From that day on, I had been feeling my own pulse.  It had been feeling strong, fast, and rolling from one finger to another.  I felt Bob’s pulse and my sister-in-law’s pulse.  Both of theirs felt very different from mine.  I don’t know Traditional Chinese Medicine.  I don’t pretend to know.  This slippery pulse can also be associated with AF coming soon, or other conditions in your body.  My pulse did feel “slippery”.  So like any other TTC ladies who do crazy things during their TWW, I am also crazy and obsessed with this slippery pulse.  I kept on feeling my pulse every five minutes.  Sometimes it felt strong and fast and rolling.  Sometimes it didn’t feel so much so.  I was going crazy thinking that I was pregnant and then I was not pregnant.  It was agonizing.  I basically do not know a thing and I keep depending my hope on this one thing and other “symptoms”.  I seemed to have forgotten that the last two weeks I had been focusing on God, His will, and His power, which gave me so much peace.  This pee stick business had taken away my peace.  I really need to put a stop to it.

After talking to M, I made a decision.  I wrote Bob a message asking him if he could hide the pee sticks for me on Friday night and we won’t POAS at all.  We will just wait for the beta.  If it’s BFN, I want the blow only once and not twice.  Even if the pee stick is positive, I would be trying to analyze the darkness of the line.  If the pee stick is negative, then I would be upset the whole weekend.  So we might as well enjoy our weekend without knowing because BFN and BFP both won’t give us any quantitative information that would ease our mind.  Bob’s response was an emphatic “YEAH!”  He has always been against testing.  He said, “Let’s celebrate not peeing on a stick!”  Silly man.  🙂

Wow guys, the sense of relief and peace that I have been feeling ever since making that decision has been so amazing.  I am no longer anxious.  I am at peace.  I could focus at work without obsessing over whether or not I should save my pee for a more concentrated version after work for the pee stick.  It has been wonderful!

It’s already Saturday and I have been feeling so good.  God really answered my prayer for being at peace and calm during the last 48 hours of our (more than) two week wait.  I am also feeling very loved that so many people are praying and rooting for us.  I don’t feel as tired as last week.  I don’t feel the tugging anymore.  But ignoring the symptoms or the lack thereof has been so liberating.  It is what it is.  By now, it’s a done deal.  I am very grateful that after half of a day of panic and craziness I am back to my calm, happy self.  I don’t even need Bob to really hide the pee sticks from me because I have enough trust and will power to refrain from testing.  They are still in the bathroom drawer exactly where I had left them a few days ago.

Less than two days to go.  🙂

(And thanks M!)


So… I have been feeling things.  I was exhausted yesterday.  My right leg started to feel very tired at 11am.  Then the fatigue expanded to my left leg at noon time.  Whenever my legs are tired, it tells me that I am really tired.  At our departmental meeting at 1pm, I was sitting in the chair with my head leaning back resting.  I could really use a nap.  I tried to power through the next few kids.  I was yawning nonstop for my 4pm client.  Good thing that kid is usually so oblivious to things around him that he did not pay attention to me doing anything.  At 5pm, the thought of standing up in front of the stove making dinner made me feel sick.  I was driving home and trying to figure out what I should get for take out.  I made a short detour, pulled into the first parking spot I saw, and walked across the street into a Mediterranean fast food restaurant and bought a beef shawarma and a Mediterranean burger.  Very thankful that they made it so quickly.  When I walked into the house, I was so tired that my mom took a look at my face and asked if I was okay.  I told her that I was just tired.  I devoured my burger.  She came and examined my face and asked, “Are you having your period?”  I said no.  Then she examined my face some more.  Then she said, “Are you pregnant?” I shook my head.  I still haven’t told my mom about the transfer and don’t plan on telling her anything until after beta.  So I just shrugged and pretended that I didn’t hear her.  My mother is smart.  She is onto something.  But I kept a straight face and fooled her.  That was 7pm. I really wanted to do some work but I just couldn’t keep my eyes open.  I lay in bed and took a nap.  I would have continued sleeping had I not had to go pick up Bob at 8:30.

It’s so very out of the ordinary for me to take a nap in the evening.  I asked my secret friends if extreme exhaustion is a good sign or it is progesterone messing with me.  I got an overwhelming response of it being a good sign.  I still don’t want to read too much into it.  Last night I went to bed and woke up four times in the middle of the night.  When I woke up at 2am, it was also with a headache.  I don’t know what is up with that.  But apparently that could be a symptom too.  One of my friends who just got pregnant with twins told me that her early symptoms this pregnancy were exactly the same as my current “symptoms”: extreme exhaustion, waking up in the middle of the night, and feeling of tugging on the abdominal area.  I told her that I don’t recall having the same symptoms last year although I was on the same progesterone suppositories.  She was so crazy and funny. She went through thousands of lines of chat to find out what I said last year.  She later confirmed that I said I didn’t have any symptoms last year.  So this transfer feels different.  I was still tired at work today, especially at 2:30pm when I was writing a report.  I couldn’t think straight.  But I felt more energy in the evening and could even make dinner for myself and Bob.

A few of my friends have been asking me to pee on a stick.  They are suggesting creative ways for them to see the sticks if I don’t want to see them, such as peeing on the stick, not to look at it, and FaceTime with them so they could see the result.  Uh.  No.  If I peed on something, I don’t think I could refrain from looking.  My friend Jo is the most convincing one.  She thinks that a negative stick doesn’t mean a thing (coz it could still be positive in the future), but a positive stick would be a reason for early celebration.  And then I could see the progression of the darkness of the lines.  She tries and tries, but I just won’t budge.  One of the reasons why I may want to test before beta is that I would want to know if I had a chemical pregnancy.  So Jo doesn’t understand why I wouldn’t want to start testing at 10dpo (yesterday).  At 10dpo, it would still be very possible to have a negative test even if there is a pregnancy.  I just don’t want to put myself in that emotional state if the test came back stark white.  Plus the thought of testing really makes me nervous.  So I would rather wait for a few more days and decide.  I did order three FRER which arrived yesterday.  I was also gifted an extra FRER by my Dear Colleague.  I have four in possession but I am not testing.

Am I being crazy?  I am sure I am not imagining things.  I do feel those things.  But whether or not those are pregnancy symptoms, it’s hard to say.  I am still quite calm and happy.  God is giving me peace and calm and I am very thankful for that.  I am still hopeful for a positive outcome.  I still want to bask in the joy of the possibility and not knowing.  I know I am driving my friends crazy for not peeing on a stick.  But I have to do what I need to do to make myself sane.  If I am pregnant, a positive pregnancy test will be a lot more likely on 14 and 15dpo than 10dpo, right?  So I will wait.

Five more days before beta!  Scary…..

MicroblogMondays: While We Wait


Hey not bad!  It’s been already seven days since our transfer a week ago.  We have exactly one more week to go.  While we wait, these things are happening:

  • The day after my transfer, I felt like I was carrying the biggest secret around at work.  And ever since that day, since I can’t see inside my uterus, it feels very surreal that a transfer actually took place.  It’s like life as usual.  Did a transfer really happen?  Do I really have five embryos inside me?
  • That said, everyday I talk to my embryos.  I tell them to grow and be strong.  And I want one or two of them to be the winners and attach to the lining.  I keep my feet warm every single day so that the rest of my body will be warm.  At my acupuncture appointment, I was told that my pulse was strong and slippery.  I take that as a good sign.
  • Everyday I feel like I am having a white period.  This is the fun thing about using Endo.metrin.  Panty liners are not enough to contain the amount of fluids that leaks out.  I have to wear a pad.  Fun times.
  • My husband is very sweet.  He comes home everyday and asks, “Are you feeling anything?”  I think it’s tough for guys because they are not the ones who receive the embryos and they rely on us to tell them how we’re feeling.  He puts his hand on my tummy and tells the embryos to stay put.
  • So am I feeling anything?  Of course not.  But there have been a few days when I was tired beyond belief.  Saturday was six days past two day transfer (6dp2dt).  I did wake up before 6am.  I can usually last for quite some time before I get tired.  But definitely not on that day.  Bob and I traveled to downtown for my dental appointment.  I was so tired that I had to rest my head on his shoulder on the train. That was 1:30pm.  Right in the middle of the day.  While waiting at my dentist’s, I leaned my head against the wall.  I was that tired.  I am quite sure that my body is reacting to the progesterone.  But of course I secretly hope that it’s a pregnancy symptom.
  • By the way, I asked for x-ray not to be done at my dental appointment because of those embryos inside me.  I hope that this is going to be proven to be a legitimate thing to request rather than wishful thinking.  Otherwise, I’ll feel like a fraud.
  • I also feel some tugging in my abdominal area.  When that happens, I can’t help but think that maybe something is happening there because it is around implantation time.  Or maybe the progesterone is fooling me.
  • I think my friends are more nervous than I am.  Many of them are counting down the days for me.  I am grateful that I am so loved.  And many of them are praying for us daily.
  • It’s been fun to show the pictures of our embryos to people.  Some friends have not experienced (or will never experience) infertility.  One of them pointed at my 8-cell embryo asking if a few babies will come out of that embryo.  She thought that each cell is a possibility of a baby.  This is a woman who herself has two children.  It just boggles my mind that some people really have no clue how their children were made.
  • Oh and the question of POAS or not to POAS.  My first beta day is March 16th, which is 14 days after transfer.  That will be 16 days past ovulation.  It’s a very long time to wait for beta.  And it happens to be Monday, a very busy day for me.  I asked my nurse if it’s possible to move the beta sooner to March 13th, which is a Friday.  I was just thinking that maybe it’s better to find out on a Friday so we could either celebrate overcoming the first hurdle or I’ll have a whole weekend to wallow in my own sorrow.  My nurse said that they can’t possibly let me move it any earlier.  So March 16th it is.  Then I wonder if I should really POAS on Saturday or Sunday so we can be mentally prepared for the blood test result on Monday.  I don’t have any pee sticks at home.  I think I’ll only test on FRER.  So I think I will order some from Ama.zon and be prepared if I really feel like testing before beta.  Even though the thought of it makes  me a little nervous……
  • In general I am feeling hopeful.  There is no reason to believe that it won’t work until we test, either at home or at the lab.  I have been quite calm.  And I want to remain this way.  However, I know that in a few days I may feel more and more anxious.  And that’s okay.  I just have to look to God and let Him take care of things.

How good are you at waiting???

More Twists and Turns But They Are Home!!!

It would not be like Isabelle and Bob’s fertility journey without a bit of twists and turns.  But, all is well.

Today is our transfer day.  We went to fitness bootcamp like usual, but I was good with modifying my movements.  No jumping.  No running.  No lifting.  No abdominal exercises.  I maintained a very calm and happy mood for the whole morning.  Bob and I left at 11am to go to my first acupuncture appointment.  It was such a luxury to lie there for 45 minutes just relaxing.  We had plenty of time before our transfer so I began to fill my bladder by drinking water.  At lunch, Bob and I prayed before the meal.  Our prayer was for God’s will to be done, and we will follow.  Not even a minute after that prayer, I received Dr. No Nonsense’s phone call.  I was a bit nervous that he was calling me right before the transfer.  My worst nightmare was that he’d tell me that nothing survived the thaw.  Well, he didn’t say that.  Instead, he said that there was good news and a bit of not so good news.  The good news was that all of the embryos thawed beautifully.  The not so good news was that somehow the nurse with whom I called and double-checked yesterday about my order somehow had a miscommunication and passed on the wrong information to the embryologist.  In the order, Dr. NN wrote down “4” for the number of embryos to transfer, with the condition of us making one fresh embryo and thawing three frozen ones.  I called to make sure that the nurse and thus the embryologist understood that since we didn’t make any fresh embryos, I only wanted three embryos thawed.  She told me that she understood and would pass the message along.  Somehow, the message was not given.  The embryologist must have just looked at the original order and thawed four embryos.  So the dilemma now was, what to do with the last embryo?  My heart skipped a beat and sank for a little.  I just hate that every single time we are put on the spot to make a quick decision.  I mean, what are we to do with one final embryo?  I asked which embryo it was.  It was the three-cell grade one that wasn’t thawed.  It would really be silly to just leave one embryo hanging.  I asked Dr. NN how he felt about us putting all five in.  He said that it would be a wise decision.  He said leaving two embryos hanging would still not do too good.  He would recommend putting them all back in.  He asked if I was afraid of multiples.  I said I was.  He asked for my age again.  Then he said, given my age and my history of taking so long to make these embryos and all the failed cycles, the chances of having multiples are very slim.  If somehow we end up with twins, then it is meant to be, then we’ll count it a blessing.  I stopped my conversation and asked Bob.  We contemplated for a minute, then both said that we would just also thaw the last one.  Dr. NN seemed very pleased with our choice.  He said that this was not bad news at all.  We’re doing what we can to help you get pregnant, he said.  Then we hung up.

After that phone call, and after I wrapped my mind around the idea of five embryos, I was again at peace and happy.  God has made the choice for us.  And we followed.  I was also very relieved that the embryos thawed well.  We finished lunch and I downed two more glasses of water.  Then we walked back to the clinic and arrived very early.  We usually check in on 7th floor at the clinic and are sent to the 8th floor for the procedure.  When I waited for Bob to finish with the bathroom on the 7th floor, I saw Dr. Dry Humor coming into the clinic.  I said Hi to him and was a little puzzled why he was down on the 7th floor since he should have been upstairs waiting to do my procedure since he is the attending RE of the week.

We were on the 8th floor getting ready for the transfer.  My bladder was not overly full but was getting there.  Bob also had to put on this yellow gown that covered up his Batman shirt.  My choice of socks today was ones that my TTC friend gave me, Wonder Woman:

photo 2 (4) photo 1 (4)


When I was waiting, I saw Dr. No Nonsense show up with his scrubs and gown.  I was puzzled by his presence, and it dawned on me that he was going to do the transfer for us!  Yesterday when we talked on the phone, I asked if we could talk about the embryos right before the transfer.  He said he might or might not be able to, but he would try.  I took it as that he could show up to talk.  He took it as him doing the procedure.  So it was a surprise and extra blessing that my own RE was doing the procedure.  It was like our journey at this clinic coming to a full circle.

Bob and I walked into the transfer room.  I sat on the table.  The embryologist verified my name and date of birth.  Dr. NN showed us our souvenir:

photo (44)

All five embryos all thawed beautifully.  At freeze, they were supposed to be 4-cell, 4-cell, 4-cell, 3-cell, and 2-cell.  It seemed like one of the 4-cell expanded into an 8-cell (that’s the one in the middle that looks like a flower and you have to zoom in to see the 8 cells).  The other 4-cell on the right became about 6-cell.  And the 2-cell had become a 3-cell.  In other words, they were all doing well.

I lay on the table with my legs up.  The nurse checked my bladder and found that it was full enough but not too full.   Yay no singing Jeopardy to release any urine!  I turned to Bob and asked if he wanted to take a video.  Dr. NN was like, What? Video?  Ha.  He is so different from Dr. E.  Dr. E was the one who insisted that we took a video of the transfer.  So yeah, since we had done it once, I was okay with not videotyping the transfer.  Bob was happy to be just sitting there and watch.  Dr. NN took some time to clean the inside.  And he did a trial run of putting a catheter in.  Everything seemed good.  The most uncomfortable thing was the nurse putting the abdominal ultrasound wand over my bladder.  I felt like I was almost going to burst.  Then Dr. NN announced to the embryologist: Let’s load!  She handed him the catheter.  He put it in.  And that was it!  The embryologist checked and announced that all the embryos had gone in.  We were done!  Six months of waiting, banking, and more waiting finally came to this point.  I felt tremendous joy to have finished this task.

We have truly done our best.  I am proud of us. I am proud of Felicity, Gabriel, Harriet, Ivan, and Jenny.  They are all inside me now.  I feel that we have a good chance.  When I went to my post-transfer acupuncture appointment, my acupuncturist said that I looked happy.  I am happy.  I really feel that we have done it regardless of the outcome.

So this will be a very long two week wait.  I asked my nurse and we moved my first beta to March 16th.  It is still a whole two weeks from now.  I opt to go to the lab associated with my clinic instead of because apparently does not do beta test STAT so the results would be next day. What the heck?  I can’t wait for the next day.  So I will pay out of pocket for that test.  Our next question is to POAS or not to POAS.  I am always against POAS.  So maybe I really won’t and I will just wait.  Time to think of something to occupy my mind.

We’ve done it!  I am so happy.  I already love the embryos so much.  Praise the Lord that everything went well.  May His will be done, whatever it may be.

MicroblogMondays: Transfer Day – Hope and Optimism (200th Post)


Wow this is my 200th post!  I can hardly believe it…

Today is my transfer day.  It will take place at 2:10pm.  This is our second transfer.  Our one and only transfer was on February 10, 2014 with a blastocyst and a morula.  It’s been over a year.  My heart is full of gratitude that we have another chance.  And I am even channeling my friend Jo’s optimism.  For our last transfer, she looked up our due date for us.  I really didn’t want to do it being afraid that it would be too good to be true and we would jinx things.  This time, I feel that if I truly believe that there is a chance of pregnancy, then I should embrace the possibilities that come with it, including learning the due date.  So I looked it up online.  November 21 for singleton.  The calculator even gives you due dates for twins and triplets.

I have scheduled acupuncture appointments pre- and post-transfer with two different acupuncturists due to availability.  I am relieved that I still get to do both.  I still have to choose the socks to wear.  And not to forget I’ll have to fill my bladder with water.  I hope that they won’t ask me to go release some urine while singing Jeopardy again, like last time.  I also have the joy of sticking myself with Endom.etrin three times a day.  Fun times.

I mostly recovered from Saturday’s crazy roller coaster ride.  I was sad for a little, then I remember something that Elisha posted on Facebook.  I hope she doesn’t mind me posting it here.  This is what she wrote:

“I over heard Goldilocks [note: her foster child] praying this morning while she washed her hands and it went a little something like this…

“The bottom of my foot hurts Jesus but it’s okay because Father I thank you that I have feet. Amen”

And folks, I couldn’t help but do a dance because she get it! She gets the simple fact that we must still praise Him even in the midst of our unpleasant circumstances.”

Man… It totally blows my mind that child-like faith is so simple and powerful.  The bottom of my foot (the unfortunate event of premature ovulation before retrieval) hurts but it’s okay because I have to thank my Father that I have feet (five frozen embryos).  This simple and powerful prayer kept me going on Saturday and continues on until today.  It teaches me to focus on the Lord and be thankful for what He has given us instead of our sometimes unpleasant circumstances, like what Elisha said.

Dr. No Nonsense and I talked on the phone yesterday.  So here is the plan.  We will thaw three embryos that the embryologist chooses.  In the case of one of the embryos not surviving the thaw (there is a 5% chance of that), then we will thaw the remaining two to put them all back in because to me it will be silly to leave just one embryo behind.  I asked Dr. NN how he thought about it, and he said that would be the perfect plan.  If we do use up all the embryos, then this will definitely be the last chance to have a baby with my own eggs.  I have tremendous peace with this plan, so praise the Lord!

Please pray and think very good thoughts for the embryos to thaw well.  May God’s will be done.  He chooses and we follow.

Thank you!  This is the best topic for my 200th post.  🙂

We Have Experienced Almost Everything Under the A.R.T. Sun

In the past, we have experienced IVF with one embryo left, IVF with no embryos left, IVF with no fertilization, and IVF turning into IUI.  We can add one more thing to the IVF sh*tlist resume: Ovulation before we could even get to the egg during retrieval.  Yup.  I ovulated already.  Bummer.

I checked my cervix last night.  It was still high.  I still had EWCM yesterday.  However, there was this nudging thought in the back of my head that I might have ovulated.  My basal body temperature was low yesterday.  So I know that I hadn’t ovulated overnight on Friday.  I dared not check my temperature this morning fearing that it would have jumped already.

Today was Team Superman day.  I put on my Superman socks and Bob had on his Superman T-shirt.  We got up really early and arrived at the clinic right on time.  When I was still in the car, I took a 10mg Val.ium and could totally feel the effect of the drug right away.  By the time we arrived at the clinic, I was feeling drunk, couldn’t talk coherently, and had a hard time walking straight.  It’s so crazy how powerful the drug is.  Since the clinic wasn’t even open yet, we were supposed to call the IVF room when we arrived.  We saw the nurse on our way in.  So we went into the clinic together.  Everything was the usual.  The post retrieval instruction, the IV, the gown, the locker.  The only difference is that our usual nurse who prepped us the last three times was actually not there.  Guess why?  Yup, she’s on maternity leave.  She did NOT look pregnant the last time we saw her, although it was November so quite a while ago.

photo 1 (3) photo 2 (3)

There are our Team Superman outfits.

Anyhow, Dr. Dry Humor was the one who did the retrieval.  When I was called into the room, Bob went outside to wait for his turn to give a sample.  I lay down on the table just like the last few times.  Dr. Dry Humor commented on how awesome my socks were and said that he should’ve worn his Superman bandana that his patient gave him.  We joked a little and then got down to business.  I asked if we could do an ultrasound to make sure that I hadn’t ovulated.  Dr. Dry Humor said that he always does one.  This was when things went down hill.  He could not see the big follicle on the right anymore.  There was a shadow of it.  On the left, there was the collapse structure of the smaller follicle.  I ovulated some time last night.  I always knew that there was a possibility of that happening but didn’t think that it would actually happen to me.  All the Ganirel.ix did not save the world.  Superman did not save the world either.

Stunned, I lay on the table not knowing what to say.  I wasn’t particularly upset.  I was disappointed.  But I didn’t feel that it was the end of the world.  Dr. Dry Humor asked if I wanted to still proceed with the retrieval to see if we could salvage something.  In my head, I was thinking, poking me with a needle means that we pay for the retrieval, but since there still could be a chance for an egg, I should try, right.   Many many things went through my head.  I wished that Bob were there to make the decision with me.  I felt so lonely having to make quick decisions by myself.  In a split second, I said Yes to trying.  So I lay there while Dr. Dry Humor poked his needle through me.  Because I was so preoccupied with this shocking news, nothing hurt too much.  He did his thing. There was no eggs.  I didn’t feel like crying, but I had this feeling of sadness and unfairness and questioned the reason for letting all this happen to us and all the delays in the last few cycles to end like this.  The nurses and Dr. Dry Humor were so nice and compassionate.  When I sat up, Dr. Dry Humor put both hands on my socked feet, looked me in my eyes, and talked about planning the next steps.  We are still going to do a transfer on day two, right?  Yes.  Are your tubes good?  Yes.  How do you feel about doing an IUI right now to cover all the basis?  Well, it depends on how much it costs?  He said, about $500 to $600.  We can spare that money.  So I made a decision to do an IUI.  Dr. Dry Humor said an IUI does not interfere with a transfer on Monday because the embryos are day two, so the timing should be just right.  I wouldn’t be doing and IUI if the embryos were day-5 blastocysts.

As I sat back in the recovery area with a heat pad on my tummy, I continued to be stunned.  I just felt kind of dazed.  It was a totally different feeling from the last few times when we had four eggs, three eggs, and one egg.  Having zero egg is not a very good feeling.  It sucks.  Diminished ovarian reserve sucks.  Ovulating early despite having Ganire.lix definitely sucks.  But life still goes on.  I didn’t cry.  I just sat there and waited for Bob to do his thing.  Poor guy was told by our nice nurse that his wife did not produce any eggs and he would still have to produce his part of the deal to do an IUI.  Later on he told me that he was upset and grumpy, so that affected his performance a little.  And it actually didn’t help that all the “new” material that he had in the sample room was from 1992. The other material was perused by him previously already.  Hahaha.  Poor guy.

We were scheduled for an IUI at 9:30.  When we were done with the IVF room, it was 8am.  We walked out in the bright sun and went to a nearby popular spot for brunch.

photo 3 (1)

I was mostly in good spirit, but Bob was visibly grumpy.  He expressed how done he is for this process.  I really don’t blame him.  I am glad that when one of us is down, the other one is not.  I rubbed his back and told him that I understand.  We still enjoyed a very nice brunch.  At least the food was very good.  We talked about the number of embryos to thaw.  He now has an idea of thawing three to transfer, and just leaving the two other frozen ones to be transfer during our donor egg cycle.  I know that he’s letting his emotions talk, so I just let him talk.  We also discussed about thawing all five and transferring them all. Then we vetoed that because that would mean a chance of one to two embryos from the IUI and five real embryos.  That’s just too much.

The IUI was a breeze.  We had one done before so we knew the drill.  In the room, the doctor showed us on paper Bob’s count and other things.  Post-wash was 20 million.  This was very different compared to his last IUI where 250 million was obtained.  Bob joked about it, saying that he was proud of himself that I asked for two sperm this morning and he gave me 20 million post wash.  Haha.  Gotta love that  man.  I was asked to lie down for an extra 10 minutes.  Then we went home.

I got home feeling light-headed, and took a nap for three hours.  Waking up, I was instantly feeling sad.  Why is this process such a roller coaster?  Why do we have to go through so much and still get this outcome?  How does this fit in the grand plan of things in heaven?  I have no answers.  I know that God’s timing is good and He has a plan, but sometimes it’s very hard to trust in His plan.  I am trying really really hard to do that.  Like my title says, we have really experienced almost everything under the A.R.T. sun.  And I don’t want to.  I don’t want to be the one who says “Oh that happened to us before”.  Sorry guys, feeling a little down today.  But I’m still grateful that we have a chance of transferring some embryos on Monday.  I just hope that life doesn’t throw us another curveball and hope that embryos will thaw well.

Thinking about all this, I got teary eyed for a little.  I’m going to sign off so we can enjoy the rest of our day together.  Thanks for being there for this journey with us.  I wish I could give you better news.  I am hoping for a better Monday.

Very Last Scan and a Little Freak-Out

Today was the cycle day thirteen scan.  I prayed this morning for God’s will to be done.  I was a little nervous about the lining and was even having dreams that I was having a period instead of a growing lining.  Last night, I consulted with Dr. Goog.le for a little and then stopped because I didn’t want to freak myself out.  Let’s just say that I was freaking out the whole morning not because of the lining.

I mentioned to my friend Jo about the HCG shot that expired in January 2015.  This is something that I could have used a mere 26 days ago and nobody would have said a thing about it because it hadn’t expired.  I had a discussion about it with my acupuncturist before who was told by her RE that it was fine to use expired fertility drugs within six months of expiration.  So I never thought anything about it until Jo was saying that I should be cautious about it and should consult with my own RE.  I emailed my nurse and got the answer that they can’t allow me to use expired medication.  If I were to get a new dose from a local pharmacy today, it would cost $270.  This is something that I could’ve ordered early and paid $110 for.  I remember that my other local friend has a Ovid.rel.  I didn’t know if that and the 10,000IU HCG are the same thing.  So if I could use my friend’s Ovid.rel, then I wouldn’t have to pay so much for the meds last minute.  I had to email my nurse to see if Ovid.rel was okay to use.  I didn’t hear from her until after lunch.  By then, I had already called several pharmacies to check on pricing and shipping to be ready if trigger would be tomorrow instead of today.  Finally, I had heard from my nurse saying that Ovid.rel was okay to use.  I could pick it up from my friend after work if we indeed trigger tonight.  You see, I did all of this in between seeing clients at work.  I was so stressed out that I didn’t even have the time to worry about the scan.  At one point, I stopped myself and told myself that it was okay to pay $270 for a medication if I really need it.  After that, I felt much better and was not stressed out anymore.

I got to my appointment 10 minutes early hoping that I would be seen early like last time.  The lady in front of me went to the bathroom.  The nurse came out three times to call her name and she was still in the bathroom.  They finally connected but it was cutting into my appointment time.  My time was at 1:15pm and I had to be back at work by 2pm to see my clients.  I got called back in quickly but had to wait for the Nurse Practitioner for about five minutes.  Since my mind was still preoccupied by the trigger shot, I was not really too focused on the scan.  NP took a little while to find the lining.  She said it measured 7.7mm.  Then she shifted the view of the scan to find a better view.  She measured that instead and said it was 7.8mm.  I was a little worried about the thickness but she said that anything over 7mm is good.  In fact, she showed me the section of the lining that showed these three very clear stripes.  She told me that two days ago I also had a trilaminar pattern but it wasn’t as defined and “beautiful” as today.  Today she called it “beautiful” a few times.  I don’t know how to judge the beauty of the endometrial lining but I will take her word for it.  She said that that pattern is more important than the thickness.  Plus the lining will continue to grow.  I guess I won’t worry about it until my RE says something otherwise.

At first the follicle on the right side was 17 or 17.5mm.  She measured it one more time pushing on my ovary to get a better view.  She said she really wanted to measure it well but even one mm would make a big difference.  She was very careful and measured it again.  Then she announced that it was 18mm.  This time I got to see the view and saw a nice big round dark circle.  She went on to measure the left side. The follicle was 15mm.  The cyst-like structure outside of the ovary was still the same size.  It seems like the left follicle has been growing slowly, so I don’t know if that affects the egg quality or not, or if there is even an egg.  With the size of the follicles, NP said she would imagine that Dr. No Nonsense would recommend triggering tonight.

I went on to tell the NP how stressed my morning was with the whole trigger shot question.  She told me that the shelf life of the powder form of medication usually lasts a lot longer than liquids.  So she thought that it would be okay to use the expired meds.  But to make sure, she went ahead and asked the attending RE.  It happened to be Dr. Keikoman and he gave his Okay for me to use the trigger shot tonight confirming the NP’s point that powder form should be fine.  Thank you!  I was so relieved after talking to her and getting a reproductive endocrinologist’s confirmation.  I  guess this is the price I pay for going to a big clinic when you can get many different opinions and answers to questions.  This would never happen at the little clinic that I cycled with because Dr. E would have told me yes or no a long time ago.

I was told to wait in the waiting room for the nurse to get my paperwork ready assuming that we would trigger tonight.  The NP would email Dr. NN to confirm trigger.  I waited and was a little worried about going back to work on time.  By the time I was called back in it was 1:45pm.  I signed the usual paperwork and was shown the order typed up by Dr. NN.  I nodded looking at the items such as ICSI and assisted hatching until I saw that the number of embryos transferred was 6.  SIX!?!  I am NOT going to transfer 6 embryos.  The remarks section said something like “one fresh embryo and thaw three frozen embryos and transfer whatever is viable”.  One plus three does not equal six.  Dr. NN did not do the math right.  So I had to explain to the nurse the following: if we make one embryo, we’re thawing three of the best ones to transfer four; if we make two embryos (which became a possibility now), we would thaw two embryos and transfer four; If we make no embryos, we will still thaw three and transfer three, and leave the two other frozen ones to be thaw at the next fresh cycle.  I made sure that she understood before we moved on.

The nurse went on to explain all the instructions for retrieval and transfer.  Beta is going to be on March 17th, which is 15dp2dt.  Wouldn’t I die of waiting??? My last transfer’s beta was on 8dp5dt.  I guess I will either have to request for an early day or I have to POAS.  I’m pretty sure that my period will not come yet if I am still on progesterone.  So either way, I will have to POAS to make sure that I don’t go insane.  Since this is something out of pocket, we’ll have to get my beta done at Kai.ser, my current insurance provider.  I will have to email my OB/GYN that I have never met in person.  Or I can pay out of pocket at a different lab.  So the nurse went on and on about everything.  I looked at the watch and it was already 2pm.  By the time we were done, we were inching towards 2:05pm.  I was already late to get back to work.  She then told me that they needed to do a physical and history.  I really didn’t have time for that so I would go back tomorrow for it.  I ran back to work and was 15 minutes late for my next client.  Oh well.

The nurse later called and confirmed trigger to be tonight at 9pm and retrieval will be on Saturday at 7am.  We will have to arrive at 6:15am and call the IVF room directly since no one will be at the clinic until 7am.  This is really really early but it’s okay.  Transfer will be on Monday.  I will have to book my acupuncture appointments.  It is preferably done before and after transfer.  However, I don’t think my acupuncturist can do it before my transfer so I have to settle for one session after unless I can find someone else to do it.

Friends, this is getting real!  Hopefully this is the very last trigger shot that I will ever need.  I hope that the follicles are doing well and I will continue to do Maya massage self care to help with the follicles and the lining.  I have a Maya massage appointment tomorrow and I had my mom make me bone broth to help with my body as recommended by my acupuncturist at yesterday’s session.  I am doing everything I can do make it happen. The rest is up to God.  Please pray and think very good thoughts for those follicles for them to have mature eggs inside.  Thank you so much!  I will update after our retrieval on Saturday.

Two Follicles

Today is cycle day 11.  Bob couldn’t come to my scan today since it was in the afternoon.   I was flying solo.  My favorite nurse practitioner (NP) was the one who did the scan.  We hadn’t seen each other since November so I was very excited to see that she was the one who did the measurements.  She is always very thorough, more so than most of the REs I have seen there.   Going in, I was feeling a teeny tiny bit nervous, but not overly so.  When I was walking to the clinic from work, I was preparing myself to receive any not-so-good news: lining not growing, one follicle shrinking and disappearing, or whatever crazy things could happen in a cycle.  When I lay down on the table, I couldn’t  see the ultrasound screen due to the angle.  I usually would request to see it.  Today I didn’t even care.  I just let NP do her thing instead of staring at the screen trying to decipher what was on it.  NP was very focused on the screen without talking for quite many seconds.  I didn’t think anything of it, although she reassured me that nothing was wrong.  She just needed to bypass my fibroid in the back in order to take the measurement of the lining.  The lining was still trilaminar, 7.1mm.  I was wondering in my mind if that was good enough, though I realize that this is still early and it has a few more days to do its thing.  She went on to measure the follicles.  Without looking at the screen, I felt very calm.  It is what it is, right?  She first announced that the follicle on the right was 14mm.  Good, I thought.  I didn’t have much expectation for the follicle on the left.  Then she said, 14mm on the left.  Really?  Wow.  I asked if it was the cyst rather than the follicle.  She examined it for a little longer, then she said, It’s definitely a follicle because of its structure.  She then found the third structure that seemed to be outside of the ovary or something like that.  It could be the cyst.  It was 12mm so it’s definitely shrinking.  So guys, we have two follicles measuring the same!  This is so unexpected since it’s a natural cycle with no Letro.zole or  I am very pleased with what my ovaries decided to do.  Since we usually trigger at around 18mm, NP thought that Dr. No Nonsense would want me to wait two more days.  She told me to make an appointment at the front desk for a Thursday appointment.  She would talk to Dr. NN and call me.  I went ahead and made an appointment.  When that was done, I waited for the elevator.  When the elevator door was closing behind me, I heard my name and quickly pressed the “open” button.  NP was yelling out my name for me to go back into the clinic.  She had just emailed Dr. NN who quickly returned her email. She thought that it was better for us to talk in person than for her to call me on the phone.  I was situated in one of the empty ultrasound room when she went back to read her email one more time for the instructions.  Then she returned to tell me that Dr. NN wanted me to inject two vials of Meno.pur and one dose of Ganir.elix.  For those who are not familiar with the meds, Meno.pur is used to help boost the growth of the follicles, and Genir.elix is for holding off ovulation.  I am pleased with what Dr. NN wants to do because I do want to give both follicles a chance to grow.  We are to do this tonight and tomorrow night.  When I return on Thursday, my follicles (or one of them) will most likely grow to about 18mm.  I anticipate the trigger shot to be done Thursday night, egg retrieval on Saturday, and embryo transfer on Monday.

This is the best outcome that I could hope for at today’s appointment.  I didn’t expect two follicles, let alone both of the same size.  Praise the Lord that we have good news today.  I hope to keep the same zen attitude and wait for things to unfold.  This is getting real, friends.  🙂