Glucose Failure: She’s Sweet Enough Already

Well, I failed my 1 hour glucose test. Not by a few points, but by 40 points. My fasting glucose was about 92, which is on the high side, and my levels after drinking that nasty orange sludge was 180. What’s more is that my OB doesn’t do 3 hour tests- she believes that if you fail the first one, your body isn’t tolerating glucose well enough to drink more of the sugar for 3 hours. So she treats you as if you have gestational diabetes.

Honestly? I was really upset about it Monday and yesterday morning. I felt like a total failure, I felt pissed off, I felt like I let Little Rabbit down, I felt like…how is it that I’m a petite person, who has gained 21 lbs so far, and I fail, but there are people who gain 75 lbs in their pregnancies and they pass???

I’ve settled down a bit: it’s not my fault. I’m not doing anything “wrong” for Little Rabbit. It’s just the way my placenta is interacting with my body.

That doesn’t mean I’m happy about it. I’m really disappointed. I worry about the complications- for me and for my baby. I read things online that tell me I have a 7 fold increased likelihood of developing diabetes in my life. I read things like baby girl could have hypoglycemia when she is born, which is dangerous, or have lifelong metabolism problems. I know that most of the risk comes when GD is uncontrolled, but I still hate to think I’m risker than I was a month ago.

So, no cookies, cake, ice cream, fruit juice, honey, syrup, cereal, jam- etc- for me. I have to cut back on my fruit. I have to cut back on my carbs. I am supposed to be eating more meat (which is weird to me)- beef and pork are on the OK list but granola is not! Like, this totally flies in the face of how I typically eat in general.

I even went to the gym today. It’s too hot already to walk outside, so I spent some time on the treadmill and with small weights. It’s not what I want to be doing when my body is so big and uncomfortable, but I feel too guilty not trying it out.

My next appt is in 3 weeks- and I have to come fasting to get another blood draw. Hoping I can stick to this diet and when I go back in, I won’t need insulin (just such a bizarre thought).

19 Weeks, 3 Days: Kicks and Scares

Happy belated Easter for those who celebrate. We don’t, as we are agnostics and my husband is ethnically Jewish. Still, I loved seeing all the little rabbit and bunny memes, cartoons and kid outfits- it reminded me of MY Little Rabbit!

Everything has been trucking along in 2nd trimester in the best, most boring way possible. I don’t want any ‘excitement’ during this time- just want there to be nothing to report, just smooth sailing. And its been the way! So I was quite surprised when this morning around 9:30 I went to the bathroom and discovered some light red spots on my toilet paper.

UGH. My heart was racing immediately even though I told myself to try to calm down. I wiped a few more times and it faded almost as quickly as I came. 30 minutes later I had some brown dots and now, nothing at all.

The last time I had spotting, I was just about 12 weeks. Now, I am just about 20. I panicked a lot the first time and called my OB, started crying, the whole works. Went in to see the babe and she was doing absolutely fine. My OB said she isn’t worried about very light red at all, that some people’s bodies just spot while others don’t. She told me to expect it again- and only to get worried if the flow is heavy (filling a pad in an hour) and/or I have rhythmic pain.

I remembered those words she told me from last time. I calmed my breathing a bit. Mr Upside told me to keep an eye on it, but not to worry. So, I am trying not to.

LUCKILY….my little girl is helping me out in this area! She started kicking! I felt the first real kicks on my left side, about an hour after this spotting occurred. I can’t even explain how bizarre and truly AMAZING it feels. I like to think she’s letting me know she’s ok.

So, that’s where I am right now. I still have that anxiety in my chest, but its fairly mild at the moment. Every now and then I get a funny little kick or punch from Little Rabbit and I’m filled with delight. We have our 20 week appointment on Thursday morning, and even though we don’t get our anatomy scan then, I am hoping we can still see her and get some pictures her looking happy and lively.

I’d like to catch a break, not a cold.

I’m on a business trip- woke up to catch my flight Tues morning with a sore throat. Yesterday (Wed) it turned into full blown fever and chills and aches- in the middle of our strategic planning. Given that strategic planning happens once a year and is MANDATORY I had to suffer through it, shaky and rocking myself in the corner of the table. Lol. 

Today the illness has moved into my chest and no more aches (yay). HOWEVER I got my second biopsy results back. They’re not what I expected. 

POST-RECEPTIVE.

That’s right y’all. Prereceptive on day 6, post on day 7. 

My RE says basically I will have to do 1 extra dose of crinone (typical days dose is TWO crinones, so this would be more like half dose). My window is somewhere between days 6 and 7. 6 1/2????

He says he’s not seen anyone in his clinic like this: but they’ve only been doing ERAs for about 11 months? But OF COURSE I’m so rare and weird.

So we will be transferring in January with 6 1/2 days of crinone. It’s absurd but it’s the only solution. They know my window has to be between days 6 and 7 because they know when I’m pre and post. 

I know that 12 hours can make a difference. I know it’s possible. I just wish I could have seen that big “RECEPTIVE” label on my labs. 

The silver lining is- thank goodness we didn’t transfer this past cycle with my post-receptive uterus! Thank you to all who weighed in.

We will be waiting for my period to start, probably around NYE and then gearing up for a day 6.5 transfer.

And I’ll keep fighting this cold. Along with the disappointment in these results. Bleh.

Good Riddance, ERA Biopsy

I just had my (HOPEFULLY FINAL) biopsy. Holy hell, it hurt worse than last time- and last time was bad. The problem it seemed, was that my cervix was too tight and uncooperative and my uterus was in hiding. My RE tried 5 different catheters and finally had to resort to PRYING my cervix open with some medieval torture device, and then sucking the lining from my uterus.

It. Was. Awful.

I screamed and yelped. And then he DIDN’T get enough after the first try so he went back in there. Good lord.

The chances are high that I will find out I am receptive and I won’t have to push it to another day. Even so, if I am still pre-receptive, no one apparently ever goes past 2 days off the typical window, so they treat you as a day eight-er regardless.

Honestly I think my body was trying to protect itself from what it knew was going to happen. Oy.

So, now I am on provera for a few days, then I get a natural cycle in December, then a hopeful FET in January.

I hope you all had a good Thanksgiving. Mine was very nice- but the holidays are indeed a strange time. Just all the family stuff, people posting pics of their new babies, announcing pregnancies, etc- it really is tough.

They Don’t Make Songs For This

Beta came in: BFN, as expected. Big fat zero.

Shocking. I know.

I knew for a few days and cried it out a lot and I don’t really feel like crying anymore. But it’s weird- even though I have been testing since day 5, and I’ve been certain since day 7, it still hurts to hear it from the nurse.

I want to eat bad food and listen to breakup music. Because they don’t make songs for this kind of pain.

My (new) nurse was sweet and already booked me a consult for TOMORROW so I have something to put in front of me. Some destination as I try to put one foot in front of the other.

My IVF twin- she’s my age, we went though IVF and FET within 1 day of each other- she got her BFP. After all this time. I am happy for her- I mean that more than if she hadn’t had infertility- but why isn’t it me? She didnt even PGS test and I did and she got a sticky one and mine died inside the death start that is apparently my uterus. Like who else is just tired of losing and watching other people leave you in the dust?

I don’t know why it failed and maybe I never will. But I’ve compiled a list of possible tests/plans to ask my RE about.

I hope in 6 months this will be in the rearview mirror. But who ever knows.

The FET Diaries: 5dp5dt and Falling Apart

So I tested this morning.

OK before you tell me it’s too early- technically I know. But I also know that this would translate to 10dpo and FRER picks up about 80% of those positives by that point.

I also know that my friend (I met her fairly recently; she’s my IVF twin. Retrievals and FETs a day apart!) got a faint line at 5dp5dt. She is 1 day ahead of me.

So what did I get? Absolutely stark white. The whitest test you’ve ever seen. I was surprised even the control line could survive something so blaringly white!

Yeah. So I am really sad now. And confused. And wondering why my body is broken. IVF went quite well for me- the egg retrieval and fertilization part. And now? Now I am starting to think its my body itself. It’s not that I cannot produce healthy eggs, it is that my body can’t receive them. There is a reason I have never had a positive even once. I have never had implantation in a year and a half.

They took our best PGS normal embryo and it didnt take.

Look. I know that I could be wrong and I could end up with a positive beta. But you have to at least come at me realistically and say that it’s less than likely at this point. I would love to be wrong, but what I wouldn’t love is false hope. I feel like that’s all my life was 6, 10, 14 months ago- hope upon hope that eventually came crashing down. I don’t need that anymore.

What I need to know is how to go forward. What should change in my protocol?  I dont know, maybe nothing will. My RE doesn’t believe in immunity issues, even though I have 2  autoimmune disorders. I don’t really know what else to do, what else to say. I guess I want to move on as soon as possible and maybe start thinking about gestational carriers.

I know that sounds extreme from 1 failed FET but- I want to feel proactive and I  just don’t have faith in my own body right now.

Swallowing the Pill: Estradiol & Expectations

Mr. Upside can’t come to my transfer. He has a business trip that can’t be changed because it’s for a conference, not a one-off meeting. It’s very frustrating. He promises it won’t be like this forever, that this is the last of the year (till next June) and that he wants to be there instead. And I get it. I don’t want to make him feel bad over something he can’t control, and for a job that allows us to afford a lot of the treatment we pursue. He makes more money than I do. But I wish it weren’t happening this way.

He’ll be gone the whole week, so we initially thought we could move the day a day or two, but it won’t make a difference.

So I am *tentatively* scheduled for an Oct 4 transfer and I will be going alone. Which is not at all what I wanted, or expected. And yet I am trying to pick my battles. We decided we  could push it back a whole month, but I don’t want to. I have to realize I, too, am choosing this date– to go forward while he’s not in the city.

Anyway. Thank you for all your nice notes. My grandma’s funeral is next weekend and we’ll both be going up for that and spending time with my family.

Other than this, things are pretty status quo. I started estradiol in pill form yesterday. Two little blue pills a day until a week from now when I kick into into gear with THREE pills a day. I was scrolling through Instagram with the hashtag #estradiol last night to find others’ IF journeys and I realized half the people who take it are actually transitioning sexes, MTF. So it was funny and eye-opening. Of course that makes sense- it’s pure estrogen! I’m waiting to become EVEN MORE of a woman than I am now 🙂

 

Cyster, Cyster

Womp womp. I went in for my baseline on Friday afternoon- actually, at 5 PM. Had to fight Friday evening traffic. My RE basically told me it’s 50/50 odds that I’d have cysts or not. I figure with 21 eggs, the chances are a lot higher than when I only had 2 or 3.

Right side looked okay at first glance…then he moved to the left. There was no mistaking that giant black blob on the screen: definitely a gigantic 24-mm cyst. As it turns out, that wasn’t my only one though. I also have 2 small ones on my right side- but they are complex, meaning they are a combination of fluid and blood (gross, sorry), and on the sonogram they look grey and less obvious. Turns out my left ovary is a bit swollen on top of things. None of this is surprising to REs, I guess.

Anyway. As my RE said, “embryos are too precious to risk on a less than perfect environment.”

So, any September transfer hopes are off. And that’s okay. But I can’t pretend I’m not a little bit bummed, even though I feel a little guilty about that. I have gotten such incredible news about my 7. Five boys and two girls (which is a little surprising in itself). But this sense of waiting and sitting around never seems to stop with IF, and you know, best laid plans…

So my goal now is to shrink these 3 cysts into oblivion. My RE put me back on birth control, so I’ll take that for about 2 1/2 weeks. I go back on September 12 to see if they’re gone and if I can start Estradiol.

When I had my original cyst issue back in February, my life was very very different. I felt like I had little hope and no plans. I was still doing TI, not even IUI yet. And the thought of having no plans and no hope for even a medicated cycle was too much for me. I cried for like 3 days and felt depressed for the next week. It was so hard for me to see a light at the end of the tunnel.

And now? Now my light is so many things. My light is my husband. My cat. My family and friends who have been there for me since I opened up to them. My light is this blog, and the Instagram community. My relative health. And, without a doubt, my magnificent seven.

I can do this. I believe my body will absorb these cysts. I believe that in October, I will have a successful transfer. I believe I will have a baby.

Egg Quality Woes

I have been having a really hard time lately.

Well, to be fair, just the past 2 days.

I have my IVF protocol. I was nervous and overwhelmed but ready to tackle everything. And then…well, it’s hard to say exactly what made my mind collapse, but certainly the catalyst was the following:

I’ve been talking to a girl on the RESOLVE boards since January. We have pretty similar backgrounds and diagnoses. Early 30s, largely unexplained, and short luteal phases. Hers are like 8-9 days, mine are like 9-10. Her RE, in Michigan, is convinced luteal phase defect (LPD) = poor egg quality. In theory it makes sense- the corpus luteum is of too poor a quality to sustain progesterone for 14 or even 12 days.

Anyway, she skipped IUI and went straight to IVF. I just heard back from her yesterday, with terrible news: although 14 eggs fertilized and 13 made it to day 3, ZERO made it to day 5. None at all. So yes, she has poor egg quality.

She is going to try one more round and then move onto donor egg.

I am heartbroken for her, but it also sent me into a tailspin about my own prospects. I don’t have a diagnosis. Everything that has been tested seems largely okay. I have a LPD. I had 4 eggs last cycle. took progesterone, and NONE implanted. Doesn’t it seem like egg quality could be the top issue?

I just lost it this morning. I went to yoga and then left and immediately bawled for hours. I can’t go through this just to realize that my eggs aren’t babies at all. That they’re shit quality and I have to either adopt or use a donor egg.

I know its way too early to be thinking of this since I don’t know, but my heart is sinking and my gut thinks “hmm, yeah, this could really be it.”

My RE doesn’t think LPD = poor egg quality, but she doesn’t seem to offer a better explanation.

Anyway. I am trying to keep myself together through the next month to get to retrieval. And then take it from there.

Here’s my timeline:

BCP from now until July 29.

Baseline July 29: if all is well, then…stop BCP, and start taking Gonal-F

Stimming starts Aug 4th. 

First sonogram Aug 8th.

Estimated retrieval date August 16. (Give or take a few days).

Trying to stop a meltdown over here. I really appreciate all of you. xx.