Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Jab/Poke

Today is day 3 of my being on bactrim and I'm still having urgency/frequency to pee.  Still have pressure in my belly, but the doctor said it appears to be bladder and not uterus.  So, at least we can definitely rule out infection of my uterus.  They did a urine check and the first part of the test came back negative, so now I'm waiting for a culture -- results on Thursday.  She said it's possible that it is very early symptoms, that it's not very common, but that sometimes women do get that this early.  I didn't ask that question, she volunteered that info with a caution.  The medications could be somewhat responsible for the bloated feeling, so I'm trying not to read too much into that.


However, today I started with the most absurd amount of gas I have ever had, pretty much... well... ever.  It's unbelievable.  


I'm going to attempt to NOT test until Friday.  My friend Lisa, the photographer, would like to be present and I think it's POSSIBLE that I could potentially get a result on Friday even though it is super early.


I'm not sure if I can pull it off though.  Maybe I could test with non-digital tests... maybe that'd be a good compromise.



Monday, July 30, 2012

Pee-ople Magazine

So, tomorrow morning at 10am I will be heading into the doctor to get checked out and to leave a urine sample. 

Apparently, I should be feeling much better now, but I still have pressure and am still peeing like crazy.  Still no fever or other signs of infection.

Unrelated to that, I am still getting hot flashes but as of this evening the trigger shot is officially out of my system.  I finally got the negative pregnancy test (the only time you can really be happy about that).  So, now I can begin obsseively peeing on sticks for the real result.

I have a serious problem -- this doesn't even include the digital one that I used as a tie breaker.

And the dog is always there cheering me on.

Tinkle Times

So, I woke up at 5am to pee today instead of at 3:30, but the important part to note is that I woke up to pee at all.

I have now taken 3 of the 6 bactrim pills and I haven't really seen an improvement.  I thought when I awoke this morning things were better. However, it seems the longer I am up and moving about, the more pressure I feel.

I guess I'm going to call into the RE's office and see if I can be seen first thing tomorrow morning instead of today because I will need to leave work early (again).

Still drinking lots of cranberry juice, but I am just not having any relief.  The RE didn't really say what she would be concerned about if I wasn't feeling better from UTI, just that I should be seen.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Urine Nation

I live in a land consumed by the need to pee.

If I were Native American, my name would be I Pee Frequently.

I left a message with the RE's office last night requesting a call back.  It seems the Cranberry Juice and water I consumed really has not reduced the urge to pee.  (Not surprising... but that damn pressure!!)

I heard from the doctor first thing this morning and she called in an Rx for Bactrim to treat UTI.  She said if I'm not better by early afternoon tomorrow, that I need to be seen in the office.

She asked about whether I have cramping, I don't.  Just tons of pressure and lots of peeing.  I have had UTI before, and normally I have urgency, but when I go there is little to no pee.  This is urgency with pee!  Still waking up at night to pee.

The HCG shot would not cause the pressure feeling in the uterus as one of its side effects, so who knows if it's a UTI or not.

Stay tuned for the Tinkle Times morning bulletin.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Diagnostic Image Porn

No, this isn't some crazy version of "Good Night Moon".  It's my beautiful uterus and tubes!  I'm kind of a nerd and into all things reproductive and birth related (duh, I'm a doula, we're weird like that!)


So, here, for your viewing pleasure, are images of my hysterosalpingogram (HSG).  It was not bad at all -- save for that damn clamp on the cervix which caused some cramping. 



At the bottom of image you see the clamp holding my cervix and catheter in cervix through to uterus.  This is before the dye is injected into the uterus.





Here, you can see the uterus begin to fill with the contrast dye

Tubes beginning to fill, and uterus is clearer

Uterus and Tubes Full the whispy white areas outside of the uterus is dye spill over into the peritoneal cavity shows tubes are nice and open.

Side view - but not sure which side is which, but I think this is the left side

Left side view again (I think)

I'm pretty sure this is a transverse view. As you can see in all of these images, my uterus is a bit "arcurate" meaning the top of my fundus dips down toward the center as opposed to being more straight across.  i'm told this shouldn't make a difference in my fertility, however there is a chance that this is a bit of fibroid material, but it shoudln't affect anything at this stage

Friday, July 27, 2012

Olympic Urination

In the Spirit of the Olympics, I have been practicing extreme urination.  I mean, I peed 5 times in 2 hours today.  This is incredibly strange for me.  I don't know if it's the beginnings of a UTI, or side effects from the trigger shot, or what.  It doesn't burn, it doesn't stink, it doesn't hurt, and it's plentiful amounts. 

Also, the pressure in my uterus is INSANE. 

I also woke up to pee last night, THAT NEVER HAPPENS.

I called the doctor's office, they recommended drinking more and getting some cranberry juice to try to flush things out, just to be on the safe side.

It's too early for it to mean anything that would should get excited about.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Hot Blooded


So, last night we started agility classes with our new puppy, Finn.  The building is air conditioned, so there was absolutely NO REASON why I should have been sweating like a fat man throwing himself around on Saturday Night Live.

I didn't notice at first, but then H looks at me with this look on her face and says, "Omg, are you alright?"
I realized that my hair was drenched with sweat and I felt like I was on FIRE.  Hello hot flashes!!


I feel fine otherwise, though I still have a fullness feeling in my uterus.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

15 million sperm walk into a bar...

or my uterus, your choice.  :-)

So today was the big day!  I got my estradiol results which were 223 and triggered last night as I mentioned yesterday.

I started my day off with a little acupuncture over at Providence Community Acupuncture with my good friend Cris Monteiro.  Afterwards, I made my way over to the clinic and met up with my friend and fellow doula, Lisa,  who also happens to be an amazing photographer. I think I mentioned she is working on a birth project of which I plan to take part.  We snuck in a few photos when no one was looking...

The swim team stats
After care instructions

Original vials that the swim team came in.  They actually let me keep it.

The IUI was a breeze.  The worst part was the GIGANTIC SPECULUM that they used.  Seriously, I think she could see my brain.  The nurse asked, "is there anywhere that's pinching or particularly uncomfortable?"  and my response was "all of it, but I'm okay."

When she put the catheter in there was a little bit of cramping, but she told me to let her know when it stopped and then she would proceed.  The cramping, she said, was a good sign because they know for sure that they are in the right spot.  The whole procedure took fewer than 5 minutes, then she told me to hang out for 10 minutes and then I could be on my way.

As soon as the nurse finished, I had this realization that this might be it. There's no going back now!  "Holy. Shit."

And H's response was, "What have you done??"

And then we all cracked up.  Lisa and her baby daughter started doing a little dance and we took a few photos with our phones while the nurse was out of the room.  If only we had a video camera... 

Afterwards, we took a few photos outside of the clinic and then H headed home to work and I went back to Providence Community Acupuncture for another treatment.  I fell asleep for an hour and a half which, for me, is unheard of!  I had a dream of a beautiful billowing volcano.  I have no idea what that means, but it was neat.

I went home and attempted to work and couldn't concentrate.  So, I decided to take the day without pay because I just wasn't getting anything done.  

I didn't have too much cramping for the rest of the day, just mostly what felt like pressure.



Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Well, I was going to be all fancy...

Sorry about the countdown to nowhere...  LOL!  Psych!  I have been all out of sorts since Friday. 

I ended up at THE LONGEST BIRTH EVER.  Over 60 hours of labor and that baby just would not get into position no matter WHAT we tried.  The good news is that everyone is doing well despite the fact that things did not go at all like mama had hoped.  She took each challenge with grace and she was truly an insipiration.

Once she finally had that baby in her arms, I turned to her after some time had passed and said, "So, should I do it? Was it worth it?"

An emphatic "yes!" was her response.

I took my last clomid on Thursday and never got any side effects, save for the sweating/hot flashes.

On Friday, I got called to the birth and the baby was born late Sunday afternoon.  I spent 2 nights sleeping a tiny bit in my car (because it was cool in there with the a/c and also because 60 hours and not being able to fart is torture -- not to be crude, but it's the truth!).  So, I was really concerned about whether the follicles were going to grow without any rest.  I didn't have any of my monitors with me, so I wasn't able to track what is happening on my own right now.

As it turns out, everything is just fine.Had my HSG today and everything came back clear!  Firstly, the HSG was a piece of cake.  The worst part is the clamping of the cervix -- he used a loop and not the tenaculum, so it wasn't so bad.  Just take deep breaths slowly in and out and try to keep all of your muscles as relaxed as possible.  It's really not bad at all.  There is a small possibility of a tiny bit of "fibrous" material at the top of my uterus, but it's undefined and may be nothing at all.  Dr. said it was nothing to be concerned about.  I also had my follicle check today -- I had over 20 immature follicles and one "perfect" 18mm follicle on my left ovary.  I was so excited because I had surgery on this ovary years ago and I wasn't sure if it was functioning or not.

I just did my trigger shot and my IUI is scheduled for 10:30 tomorrow morning.  Holy crap!  I'm terrified and excited all at once.  I went for acupuncture tonight -- (and it's worth mentioning again to those considering acupuncture but where cost is a barrier to check out https://www.pocacoop.com/clinics/search/0,0/18000/  to search for a sliding scale community clinic near you) -- and I am going for acupuncture again tomorrow before my IUI and again immediately after.

I can't believe it's finally here!

Here is a photo of us doing the trigger shot - you can go ahead and disregard the stretch marks if you wouldn't mind.  (At least I don't have worry about getting those if I get pregnant -- already can check those off the list!):  


Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Five... (significant dates) (and "Plan Queef")

I'm finding the significance of the dates that are coinciding with various "things" that need to happen with this process to be very interesting.

CD1 fell on my dad's birthday, CD3 blood work and ultrasound fell on the eve of the birth of my 9th doula baby's birthday, and CD12 the day of the upcoming follicle check and (hopefully) day of the trigger shot falls ON the birth of doula baby #10's birthday. 

Doula baby #10 is the baby of the family that gave these vials of sperm to me.  They decided they did not want anymore children and GIFTED THREE vials of IUI ready swimmers to me.  I love the serendipity of it all!

Symptom wise, I'm still about the same.

Since I was very concerned that I would have some emotional upheaval as a result of the clomid, we decided to come up with a plan in advance to try to mitigate the damage.  Thankfully, so far, it hasn't really been necessary to implement "plan queef", however, it is so funny (to me) that I feel I must share it with you. (All two of you.)

Upon discussion of the possible, erm, "emotional disturbance" one might expect with hormone therapy, I suggested that, perhaps, H come up with a safe word.  This word would be invoked at the moment when it was clear that I was leaping off of the emotional deep end at Club Clomid.  I felt it would be best if the word were funny, outrageous, and non-sequitur.  The word would be intended to shock me back to reality and hopefully make me laugh in the heat of the moment and NOT make more more stabby.  I suggested that "queef" would be an excellent fit.  Queef, on its own, is a funny word.  It's funny to say, and generally I think it brings out the 12 year old in us all.  Granted, it is not terribly refined, or proper, or any of those things, but damnit PLAN QUEEF WORKS!  Queef is versatile.

"Are you being queefy?"
"Is there a queef issue?"

Queefy can be sung to the tune of the Bat Man theme song.  

Queef is funny.  The more you say queef, the funnier it is.

Last clomid pill tomorrow night.

Queefs out bitches.


Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Six....

Two doses in.  Today I'm noticing a tad bit of stomach upset -- I was vaguely nauseated upon waking this morning, but it passed quickly and was very mild.  I have had the runs though since last night. Today, I definitely notice that it is more frequent.  No mood changes thus far, so I will take it!

I have also noticed increased sweating.  It is mieserably hot here, but I am in A/C.  My biggest issue is recovering from the heat once I come out of it.  Again, not even worth complaining about.

My HSG is scheduled for 7/24/12 at 9am and my follicle check will be the same day at 8am. Earliest IUI date is 7/25/12, but it all depends on how they look and when we trigger.  We are doing the IUI 12 hours post Ovidrel Trigger, not the usual 36 hours because we are only doing one vial. This will give us the best chance not to "miss" the little eggy.

So far so good.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Seven...




13 hours after the first clomid pill I feel..... EXACTLY NOTHING.  So, far so good!  Please, dear Universe, please let this be smooth sailing with the clomid and trigger shot!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Eight...



All day today I was a hot mess.

As I mentioned last night, I got my lab slip out and put it on the table so that I wouldn't forget it this morning.

I woke up on time.  Went out side, meditated, fed the koi, and sat with the dogs.  I showered, got dressed, and fed the animals.  I woke H up to let her know it was time for her to get up and get ready and I hopped in the car and was on my way.  About halfway there, I realized that I didn't have my cell phone.  I realized this when I took the wrong exit because I was so busy fretting about and being distracted by this baby I am attempting to make.  I am now running late, so  I reach for my phone to call the office, only to realize that I don't have my phone.  At this moment, I remember that I did not grab my lab slip with its 1,027 little check boxes checked, and it is sitting sad and alone on the table at home.  I also cannot call to find out if this will be a problem or whether they have a record of it because, again, I do not have my phone.

I FINALLY arrive at the office 7 minutes late.  I hate to be late, but at this point I'm just grateful to have made it in one piece.

The very nice woman in the office goes to great lengths to make me feel more at ease about my utter lack of organization and for the fact that I am late and it works.  I immediately feel more relaxed.  They usher me back to the lab area where I give 7,897 vials of blood and request a urine sample. I'm dry as the sahara, so I decided to wait until after my ultrasound.  

If you have never had a vaginal ultrasound, you really have not lived.  There is something disconcerting about being wanded so early in the morning, particularly when they didn't even have the decency to buy me breakfast!  I did have the accidental forethought to wear a dress, so no drape or undressing was really necessary.  If only I had gone commando, I'd have been all set!  I'll be sure to repeat this for the next ultrasound.  I did take off my shoes though, because heels in stirups just seems... I dunno, like a bad porno or something.

My ovaries look great.  Finally, my half left ovary looks smaller than my right one.  So, it looks like all of my organs are delighted with all of the changes I've made.  

After the ultrasound, I go into the ladies room to try to squeeze out my urine sample.  WHY has no one figured out an easier way to capture urine from females?  WHY???  Why must we always piss on our hands??  Ugh.  So, I wipe the container and place it in the biohazard bag they gave me. I put it down where all of the  bags of urine have been placed before it.  I clean myself up.  I wash my hands, and I exit the bathroom.  I stop at the front desk to inquire about how I still have not heard about when my HSG will be.  They assure me that someone will definitely call me on Monday.  I hop on the elevator and as the doors are closing, I remember: OMG!! I LEFT MY PEE IN THE BATHROOM ON THE COUNTER!!!  But, it is too late, the doors have closed, and I am forced to complete my 4 floor descent to level 1.  I hit the doors close button and #4 and I go right back up, past the lady at the desk, and into the ladies room.  Where my pee is sitting, still warm, and safe and sound.  I bring the pee to the lab and I leave once again.

My entire day ran with this theme.  Nothing terrible happened, but I just have not been on my game.  What a crazy day.  I took my first clomid awhile ago and I'm zonked now.  It is midinight, so I'm heading to bed!  Fingers crossed that I am unaffacted emotionally and have no adverse reactions to the clomid!

I've attempted to proof read this entry 6 times and I keep falling asleep.  Please excuse the typos or whatever else I did. (Especially if I typed about how much I always wanted sea monkeys.)


Saturday, July 14, 2012

Nine...

So, some of what I told you yesterday was incorrect.  My protocol is actually a bit different than I originally stated.  Tomorrow will be STD tests, Day 3 blood work and baseline blood work, and baseline ultrasound.

Pending those results, I am to start clomid tomorrow night (50mg) and continue for 5 days until Thursday evening.  On July 24th, I will go in for another ultrasound to check on the baby follicles.  If they are mature enough, we will trigger with Ovidrel sometime between 1030pm and 1130pm, followed 12 hours later by an IUI.  Then we'll begin the very first two week wait.  If the follies are too small, we'll give it another day to let them mature, and then head back in for another ultrasound.  So, IUI will definitely be no earlier than 7/25 but definitely by 7/29.

$314.57 aka "What Makes A Baby"
I picked up my meds tonight.  My insurance does not cover medication, but thankfully covers all of the diagnostics.  So, while I had to pay $314.00 for 3 trigger shots and 5 clomid pills, I think that's really not too shabby.  The IUI and the sperm "washing" and thawing costs UP TO  $391.00, which I have prepaid out of my FSA funds just in case work has a lay off.  

That's all of the news for now... I will report back tomorrow.  I should be ready to roll -- I have my paperwork on the table so that I don't forget it.

Friday, July 13, 2012

And In 10...

Today is the blessed Cycle Day 1!  I started spotting a bit yesterday afternoon and by late evening things had progressed nicely.  The doctor's office consider's Cycle Day 1 to be the first day of full on Red Bleeding, but only if the bleeding occurs before 3 pm.  Mine did not. So, today is CD 1!

I called the Lab yesterday to schedule my CD3 bloodwork, which actually would be CD4 blood work (um, wtf?) and that didn't make any sense to me.  I also attempted to schedule the Hysterosalpingogram, but some how they are already booked up! They are now scrambling to find another doctor that can do it.  There are so many people on vacation that they are just swamped right now.  As I was looking through some papers, I realized that I had notes about a baseline ultrasound and decided to call the office back.  The woman I spoke with apparently didn't realize that I might do the IUI this cycle, so she didn't schedule the baseline u/s.  So, now I am waiting for the nurses to call me back to do that.  So, we will be doing an ultrasound and CD3 blood work ON CD3, which makes me happy because I am a rule follower.

This means that I will begin clomid on CD5, which is Tuesday July 17th!  As my mother would say, "Holy Cows!"  Can someone pinch me because I cannot believe that this is finally happening.

H is apprehensive but super supportive and we are in discussions about co-parenting in an intentional way as opposed to the "just seeing what happens" kind of way.  I'm so grateful for her support -- this is stepping way out of her comfort zone and into the unknown, so it really means so much to me.  She's a good egg (and the only kind of GOOD Egg are the chocolate kind.  Preferably Cadbury.  She's definitely one of those!)



Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Independence Day

What an unbelievably hot day it was today!  We hung around the house and went in the pool with a couple we enjoy spending time with.  There is a super secret spot in our town where a bar puts off fire works on the shore.  The bar collects money from its patrons all year long and then they host a big BBQ at the bar and then everyone drives over to the super secret place to watch the fire works.

We don't go to the bar, but up until recently, we DID live on the shoreline of said super secret fireworks.  What's amazing is that you can really see several different fireworks displays from other towns and other people.  Every year the bar competes (unofficially) with a family across the water -- they must be loaded, because the displays go on for over an hour.  It's so beautiful to see them reflecting on the water.  There's not a huge crowd or tons of traffic. It is really stellar.

This year it was pretty amazing thinking that at this time NEXT year, we might have a little tiny baby to share it with. We'll have to borrow grandpa's ear muffs from shooting so as not to hurt the little one's ears.