Friday, August 31, 2012

Great Appointment

Our appointment went well this morning.  My lining measured .08cm- exactly what the doctor ordered ! They took a culture of my lining (which was blue), and I expect everything to be fine there.  It was so funny....the NP casually said, "Oh, I see you're on Estrace."

They usually leave word on my patient voicemail by 2pm.  Then they will provide me with my updated calendar- which is the same as before only a week behind.  I will start antibiotics tomorrow, along with Progesterone-in-Oil injections!  Our Embryo Transfer should happen on Thursday!  I am hopeful that we will get beta results the following Friday (September 14).

This is the closest we've ever been! We are beyond excited!!!  Thank you for all of the text messages!!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Anxious for tomorrow

Tomorrow's the big day... We'll find out if we're moving forward with this cycle.  I feel prepared for any scenario.  Of course, I hope that everything will look great and we'll schedule our embryo transfer for next Thursday!

Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers.  We know that God has perfect timing, but we would appreciate prayers for calmed nerves and peace.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Much to process

Thank you to everyone who has checked on me the past few days.  The infertility process is unpredictable.

The transfer should happen next week as long as my lining thickens.  Brandon is much better at keeping positive that I am.  With each step, I've tried to remain positive.  Writing here has kept me accountable and made me want to see the good in each situation.  It helps me to think ahead and be prepared for all scenarios.  I had already prepared for disappointment at Friday's appointment.  We're still moving forward, it's just a week later than planned. . .

If you're unfamiliar with infertility treatment... Tracking your BBT becomes obsessive.  Taking Clomid/Femara is exciting when you seldom ovulate.  Injecting stimulation drugs is even cooler to get more follicles.  Administering an HPT trigger is just awesome because you get to see two lines on a pregnancy test!  IVF is both terrifying and thrilling all at the same time.  But when you get your calendar and start feeling comfortable and "in control" of your own body...and then something goes wrong...I cannot even begin to explain the disappointment.

We have been living our life in cycles since June 2010.  We have not planned a true vacation in over two years.  Most every aspect of our life has been planned by my fertility calendar.  Over the past two years I have experienced so many different emotions.  I feel like I have been able to handle myself much better over the past six months.

I don't want to seem like I'm throwing myself a pity party, but the waiting is so difficult.  Waiting for God's timing is hard no matter what circumstance you find yourself in.  My prayer is that I can continue to see the silver lining, trust God, lean on my husband, and be a light for others.  My heart is full and I have estrogen coming out of my ears.  I've never felt so weepy.  So yes, we're moving forward, but what others see as one week - I see as five more days of anxiously waiting for possibly more waiting.

My Tentative Calendar at the moment is as follows:
Friday, August 31- Lining Check @ 9am
Saturday, September 1- Tentatively begin PIO injections along with antibiotics
Thursday, September 6- Tentative Embryo Transfer
September 14-September 17--Tentative Beta Results

Friday, August 24, 2012

Last update for the day...

I apologize for my three posts( appointment and moving forward ) today.  This will be my last update for the day, promise!

Janet left a message on my patient voicemail.  My progesterone was .3 which is good and low (exactly what they want).  They took multiple measurements of my endometrium (uterine lining) this morning, and are counting the higher of measurements at .7cm.  This is better than .58cm, but still thinner than they want for an embryo transfer.

For now, they are adding to my medicine protocol.  I will continue to take Estrace 2mg twice daily, but also begin taking the same medicine twice daily vaginally.  My next appointment is scheduled for August 31 for another lining check.  My endometrium should be nice and thick by this time.  If all looks good next Friday, my Embryo Transfer will be scheduled for Thursday, September 6.

Thank you for all of the kind words.  Today's been a rough day, but we're lucky to be surrounded by so many people who love us.

FET protocol


My appointment didn't go as well as expected.  My uterine lining was only 0.58cm and they like it to be closer to 0.80cm for transfer.  Dr. Allemand is in surgery each Friday morning, so he will review my chart and plan accordingly.  I should hear back from ART sometime this afternoon.  There's still time to change my medicine/protocol and continue to move forward... It's the "not knowing" that is difficult.  Thankfully there's been a lot to do at work to keep me busy until they call.

Thankfully I did not have an "unglued" moment.  I did cry and get upset, but this isn't the end.  My calendar is just going to change.  God still has this.  I still trust Him.  And His timing is always better than mine.

Moving forward...?

Our appointment is at 9am.

We are hopeful that we will continue to move forward.  Brandon is such a positive example for me.  Honestly, I am always nervous when we're headed to the doctor.  Brandon is the one trying to cheer me on.  There's always that thought in the back of my head preparing to cancel.  We've had to do it so many other times before.  I mean, we've had three cancelled IUI cycles, cancelled when we initially began BCP for IVF, one cancelled surgery due to insurance, and our cancelled embryo transfer when I developed OHSS.
Pretty much a long history of cancellations and waiting.

My UTI symptoms are under control so we only have to worry about my lining today.  I'm praying that it's thick and ready to receive our embryos.  I am 99.99% positive that everything will look good today and we'll be allowed to start the PIO injections tomorrow and prepare for transfer on Thursday.

We also get to pay today.  I know that I've mentioned the cost here before, but wow-Infertility treatment is expensive.  With the amount we've spent, we could have went on quite a few vacations and paid off much of our school loans.  I've said it before and will say it again; God provides.  Brandon not only made his sales goals for the second quarter, but he exceeded his plan and was eligible for bonus.

That bonus check came today... right when it was time to pay for the FET cycle.  If that's not a God thing, I don't know what is.  I'm trusting You, God.  You've got this.  If You want this cycle to work, it will.  Your timing is perfect and I will trust and follow You (but I sure hope I'm pregnant this time next week!)

Happy Friday, everyone.  I will post again later after my appointment.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012


Yesterday was fabulous.  I had a great day off at home.

Today is another story... I started having UTI symptoms.  Why now?  I left a message at ART and Janet called back.  Dr. Allemand went ahead and prescribed Macrobid.  They will do urinalysis on Friday if my symptoms are still hanging around.  I took Tylenol earlier for a headache.  Unfortunately, there's nothing else I can take for the pain.  I only drink one 12 ounce Dr.Pepper each day.  I have coffee maybe once a month now.  My caffeine intake has never been more under control!

Oh well.  Wednesday night services start back at church this evening.  At least I have something fun to look forward to this evening.

And I apologize if you're visiting from ICLW... I'm currently in the middle of my first FET cycle after IVF#1 with OHSS.

Monday, August 20, 2012


God is Good.  =)  I think that sums it all up.

Holding a Miracle
Nesia & Addie

Quality Time with Uncle B

Prayer in the Park

Teaching her to pray

IVF Miracle 

Silly Faces

Luke- He saves me a seat each Sunday morning
Near Sunset

Uncle B & Bryson

Saturday, August 18, 2012


Here It Is:

It was great to come home and see my protocol.  So for now, the plan is to transfer TWO of our frozen embryos on August 30.

Thank you for all of the support. Brandon and I are beyond excited with this cycle so far and have high hopes!  We could not do this without all of the love and prayers we've received from everyone.  Now, more than ever, I'm glad that we chose to share our journey.  There's no way that we could go through this without our friends and faith family.


Friday, August 17, 2012

FET Calendar Arrival

Brandon texted me earlier letting me know that my FET calendar arrived in the mail.  Our Embryo Transfer is scheduled for August 30.  They did not have my beta date listed, but all of you chart stalker-experts will be able to figure that out quickly.

Only 13 more days and I'll be pregnant until proven otherwise."

Treasures in Him

Brandon and I went to dinner with some friends last night.  He always tells me that  I talk too much, but there's nothing I can do to fix that.  =/   I'm only quiet when I'm not comfortable(or have nothing to say).  Anyways, we had a great dinner with N&N.  We got home a little after 9pm and I took one Tylenol PM and started reading the book of Job (I forgot how much that man was tested.)  By 10pm I was actually tired and able to fall asleep.  This morning I woke up feeling great!  Rested.  I am rested.  Thank you, Tylenol PM!

Yesterday upset me a little (see here), but it's over now.  I apologize for any whining in yesterday's post.  Remembering that God is in control is not as easy as it looks.  Also, reminding myself daily that everything I have is His isn't too simple either.  God has provided so much for us.  

Matthew 6:19-21
19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heavenwhere moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. NIV
19-21"Don't hoard treasure down here where it gets eaten by moths and corroded by rust or—worse!—stolen by burglars. Stockpile treasure in heaven, where it's safe from moth and rust and burglars. It's obvious, isn't it? The place where your treasure is, is the place you will most want to be, and end up being. The Message

We have spent a great amount of money in our journey to become parents.  It's hard not to visualize that number and think of all the other things you could have done with it.  Yesterday, I was selfish; there's no other way to explain it.  

Thank you, God, for providing for us.  
Please help me to see all of Your blessings 
and build up my treasures in You 
and not earthly things. 

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Waiting on Calendar

One of the ladies from ART called me this afternoon.  My lining check/ultrasound is scheduled for next Friday, August 24 at 9am.  The lady believed that my calendar had been prepared and sent, but I should call the office if I haven't received it by Monday afternoon.

The clinic went up on their prices.  Before, it was $2150.  Now, it has increased to $2900.  =/  We still have a $260.80 remaining balance from the ICSI portion of our IVF in June.  So, we owe $3160.80 by next week.  God always provides.  I have no doubt that this is already taken care of, but it did get me a little upset this afternoon.  I just don't like surprises.

I'll update with my calendar once we receive it.

Needing Rest

Well, I may have been wrong about side effects...  

I've struggled to go to sleep the past two nights.  For a few weeks, I had been taking Ambien to help me sleep.  I haven't taken any to help me rest since last week. (There's no way that I would risk messing up this cycle!) I could not go to sleep last night and the evening before.  Maybe I am sleeping, but I don't feel rested.  I toss and turn, burn up with hot flashes, and just feel miserable.  Also, I'm starting to notice a recurring headache.  I'm hoping that it's just stress.  My mind has trouble shutting down each night and I'm left with all of these thoughts.  I know that God is in control of our situation, but it's hard to "let it go."

Praying that I can fully trust God and His timing.  And that I can rest. 


Our Story

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

FET cycle has started

As of today, I am CD 4!  AF arrived Sunday morning.  Again, it is strange to be so excited about such a thing, but it just brings us steps closer to becoming parents.  I called ART Monday morning and they are currently preparing my calendar/protocol and will mail it once they are finished.

I began taking Estrace (Estradiol) 2mg twice daily on Monday.  This is to prepare my uterine lining for the embryo transfer.  Until I get my protocol, I am unsure of when everything will happen.  As of now, I am looking to Sheri (my amazing SIL) for advice, support, and calendar planning.  She did a FET cycle last August and we are using her info as a template until I get my packet in the mail.
With her cycle, she went in for a(an)
  • ultrasound/lining check on CD12 ("ovulation day")
  • Embryo Transfer on CD18/6dpo
  • beta (pregnancy test) CD27/15dpo/9dpt
So far, this cycle is MUCH EASIER than anything related to our IVF cycle.  Taking BCP, Lupron, Follistim + Menopur, and Novarel was crazy!  Popping one tiny pill each morning and night is much simpler than any injection.  Today starts day three of taking the Estrogen, and I have yet to feel any side effects/symptoms (which is GREAT).  I will have to start  the progesterone-in-oil (PIO) injections closer to the time of transfer, but they are easy as long as someone else is administering it.

I will continue to update my FET page with all medicines, side effects, symptoms, and anything else related to the cycle (as I did with our IVF#1 attempt).

Also, I have been posting on Twitter lately (updating about fertility junk and zombies as usual).

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

part 4

"You've got to BELIEVE the words that you're saying"

(Mark Lollar said that during On Fire practice)

I still have the notepad that I scribbled on that night in the hospital.  It stays with me wherever I go.  
The next morning I told Brandon about my vision from God.  Thankfully he didn't see me as crazy.  Dr. Allemand stopped by that morning to take out my catheter and release me from the hospital.  I shared my prophecy with him and he was moved as well.

BUT, God didn't stop with just a vision of me holding my child.  I told you I had more to say. . .

After seeing my child I was so happy.  Honestly, happy cannot even describe what I felt at that moment.  But it didn't end there.  Again, there was no audible voice, but God revealed that I've not been doing enough.  I've been writing this blog for quite some time now, but He wants me to do more.  This is my ministry.  This what I'm supposed to do.  God wants me to help MORE people that are having fertility struggles.  He wants me stretch out of my comfort zone and begin helping at a local level.  (After He revealed this I had no idea where to start.)

I recently started "counting my blessings."  It started  (partially) in response to Mackey's Sunday School lesson on July 15.
He asked us the question, "What is a blessing from God?"  
Being only a few weeks away from my struggle with OHSS, I realized that not all blessings are always good.  ("Sometimes God's blessing comes as disguised pain.")  Also, after I was back at work, God kept sending me people.  Since I've been back to work, I have discussed infertility (or any subject relating) with someone EACH and EVERY day.  I knew that I had to keep up with this.  My journal of daily blessings has been a great reminder of all of the good things, along with the people I meet.

God has provided us with many opportunities to talk about how He has blessed us.  It took quite some time for us to get here.  For most of our journey, we have been angry, sad, and bitter.  The past two years have been difficult, but we will continue to praise Him for all that He has given. I believe that He chose this path and fully intended for us to share our story.

What God Revealed to Me
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Sunday, August 12, 2012

part 3


I felt a Holy, friendly, and comforting presence.
Peace overwhelmed me.  

At that moment, I heard a baby's cry.
*Let me further explain that there were NO children or babies anywhere on the second floor of Brookwood Hospital on June 28 at 11:55pm.*
When I closed my eyes, God revealed a visual prophecy to me.  I was in a hospital gown holding our baby in my arms.  I heard our baby cry.  This moment was completely lucid.  Before this, I had been in prayer for at least an hour.  In this prophecy, I could not see Brandon, but could sense his presence and hear the smile in his voice.  The baby was swaddled in my arms.  I feel like I was looking down at my son.  He was so beautiful and had the darkest brown eyes.  It was so vivid and the image will forever be burned into my memory.
When I close my eyes even now I can see the image.  I've wished that I was skilled enough to sketch the image burned into my mind, but I am no artist.

Afterward, I grabbed a pen and notepad and scribbled down every last detail that I could think of.  I feared that no one would believe me, including Brandon.

Furthermore, God spoke to me.  There was no audible voice, but he put the words into my head.  I'll talk more about that in a minute. 

That night I was so excited that I could barely sleep.  The next morning and waited patiently for Brandon to wake up so I could share with him.

What God Revealed to Me
Part 1
Part 2

Friday, August 10, 2012

part 2

"Sometimes God's Blessing Comes as Disguised Pain" 

(Pastor Terry Hill quoted the above statement in one of his sermons)

In my life, I've been lucky to live pain-free for the most part.  I've always been terrified of needles, but I've gotten over that in the past year.  My stomach has always had issues, but it's uncomfortable- not painful.  I've suffered with pelvic pain issues, but it's nothing that's constant.

OHSS caused me constant pain.  I began having symptoms immediately after the Egg Retrieval.  It was intense bloating/hurting pain.  I ended up having breathing trouble.  Many people saw me in the five days afterward and could not believe how much my stomach had grown.  By Monday I promise you that I looked roughly 6 months pregnant.  Those five days seem like someone else lived them.  I cannot believe that I endured what I did.  I was miserable and could barely walk, much less move around without feeling terrible.  God must have had a guard of angels with me throughout those five days just carrying me.

When I showed up that Monday for my tentative Embryo Transfer (actual hospital admission), they immediately saw my pain and gave me Valium.  I was hurting, nauseated, having hot flashes, and just plain nervous.  I knew that I would be admitted to the hospital.

While in the hospital, my pain levels were regulated by much medication, which made me either exhausted or wired.  Because the nurses checked on me so often, I had trouble sleeping at night.  Also, the pigtail catheter in my right side had me terrified of making any sudden movements.  Getting comfortable was extremely difficult!  If I laid the wrong way, I would feel pain at the catheter site.

I would also wake up when any of my medications began to wear off.  On my IVF #1 page, I listed each medication that I was given (daily).  Someone was checking on me every four hours to give me something else to take.  Once the pigtail catheter was inserted I began having less pain from OHSS, but then had pain/burning at the catheter site.  While I had trouble sleeping, I would update my blog, watch movies, and pray.

On my last night in the hospital, I was having a hard time going to sleep . . .

At this point, all of my pain medication had worn off . . .

Previous linked posts:
What God Revealed to Me
Part 1

Thursday, August 9, 2012

part 1

When You've Hit Rock Bottom

Going through any type of trial is difficult.  We are all faced with struggles in our lifetime.  I'm sure that in twenty years, I'll look back on these days and realize that . . . . ( I lack the words to complete this sentence.)

The past two years have been ___________ (you fill in the blank) difficult, trying, heartbreaking, depressing, sad, angry, etc.

Throughout our time trying to conceive, I have chronicled the vast array of emotions that I have felt here on my blog.  Going through fertility treatment is often compared to roller coaster ride.  Brandon and I have both felt many highs and lows emotionally along the way.  I often feel like I'm running a never-ending marathon.

Our experience with IVF was uneventful up until the Egg Retrieval and Embryo Transfer.  Let me tell you that I never wanted to experience everything that IVF had to offer- meaning Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome.  Before June, I had never stayed in the hospital overnight, much less five days.

While Brandon and I were stuck at the hospital, we received many visitors, calls, texts, and emails.  Our experience in the hospital was great in terms of the support that we received.  It helped me to have visitors stop in; it made the day pass quickly.

Being hospitalized was an awful experience, but I didn't fully feel it's impact until I was back home.  I cried like a baby once I saw the kitchen table full of my injection supplies.  It's strange that I had no tears in the hospital, but cried a LOT once back home.  Maybe it was because I had been so dehydrated.

Previous linked post:
What God Revealed to Me

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Random-Off Day-Zombies

Thank you for all of the support on yesterday's blog post What God Revealed to Me.  There are four more entries that I am planning to post throughout the course of this week and the next.

I'm off today and have no doctor's appointment!  My favorite weeks are the ones WITHOUT appointments.   =) (For the past year or so, I've spent most of my days off at the fertility clinic).  Yes, they're trying to get me prego, but it becomes tiring spending so much time there-haha.  I've already went grocery shopping, put up the groceries, and finished a load of laundry!  It's starting out to be a great day.

I said this post was random ...
I had an extremely realistic dream about zombies last night.  It's like I was in The Walking Dead!  (One of our FAVORITE shows as well as my FAVORITE graphic novel)  I guess it wasn't exactly realistic because the zombies had the ability to talk.  Well, zombies aren't real, so it wasn't realistic, but you get my point. =)
Jennifer posted this on my Facebook timeline yesterday! 

Follow me on Twitter
(for more TTC humor, random crazy pictures from work, and zombies!)

I hope that everyone has a lovely Wednesday!  

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

What God Revealed to Me. . .

God has laid some stuff on my heart.  There is no other way to put it.

*The next few blog posts from me are going to be deep, personal, and spiritual.*

I am toying with the idea of disallowing comments on the following posts.  What do you think?  If I choose to do that, I will include my email address for comments to be sent there.  I have never not allowed comments before. . .

I have always wanted to keep my blog open and personal, and it has been killing me to keep the rest of my "hospital story" from my readers.  I have shared this story with some of our family, along with our friends and faith family.  So many people who know me "in real life" read my blog now!  I am sharing my "hospital story" this Sunday in ReCharge  (our Sunday School class) and I hope that it spreads from there.

There are four more posts (and counting) in response to this prologue.

Monday, August 6, 2012

"Dumbing Down the Scripture"

(the title of this post is quoted from Beverly)

We talked a few Sundays (in ReCharge-led by Shannon) ago about things people say when they don't know what else to say.  Many remarks are made in sad, hopeless, desperate situations.  The death of a parent, sibling, child, or loved one can be awful.  The loss of a job, bad week, or anything negative can bring you down.  Often, we seek aid from others in these situations, and are heartbroken at the responses received.
"Everything happens for a reason" and "God has a plan" are often the first responses people think to say.  Another is the ever famous "God will only give you what you can handle and no more."

When you're in the middle of a difficult situation, honestly, nothing said is going to make you feel better.  If you choose to seek help from others, be prepared for the rehearsed responses that you will receive.  For me, a simple "I'm sorry" accompanied with a big hug always makes me feel a little better.

But, in Recharge that Sunday, we talked about better responses to have in those difficult situations.  With the previous statements, we are "dumbing down the scripture" (to quote Beverly).  When we are offering advice, we should be armed with the Word of God.

  • Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.  But rejoice inasmuch as you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed. 1 Peter 4:12-13 NIV
    • Friends, when life gets really difficult, don't jump to the conclusion that God isn't on the job.  Instead, be glad that you are in the very thick of what Christ experienced.  This is a spiritual refining process, with glory just around the corner. 1 Peter 4:12-13 The Message 
  • The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still. Exodus 14:14 NIV
    • God will fight the battle for you.  And you? You keep your mouths shut! Exodus 14:14 The Message 
  • As for me, I will always have hope; I will praise you more and more. Psalm 71:14 NIV 
I feel that the above verses are more eloquently scripted than anything I could come up with.  So often, people ask me for advice.  I struggle so much with the right words to say -We all do.

I know that so many of you who know us in real life have often struggled with finding the right words to say in our struggling scenarios.  We've heard many variations of "everything happens for a reason" and "it will happen."  I know that Brandon and I are not the only ones who hear things like this.  There are so many sad situations in which people have no idea what to say.  We are always thankful and receptive to any kind words that you have to offer  We will never "call you out" on your advice.  If we don't like your advice, we will most likely tell you. (haha)  But do know that we respect and look for your advice and understanding in our situation.  And when you don't know what to say, we never forget all of the "I'm sorry," "I just don't understand why," and hugs that you give us when we're down.

*( I know that I've used the quoted statements thinking that I was helping before.  I aim to never use those statements as advice again.  If you have ever said any of the quoted statements to either of us in the past, please don't think that we remember.  Chances are, we don't.  Also, please don't think that I'm aiming this at you either.  I just hope that I can learn to use better words along with scripture when helping others.)

Friday, August 3, 2012


It must be the progesterone injection working and AF approaching, because I've been in a TERRIBLE mood!  I crawled in bed at 7:30 last night after inhaling my dinner.  Today cannot end quick enough for me.  PMS and AF are making me one crazy, hungry, grumpy lady! 

I hope everyone has a GREAT weekend and steers clear of me! =)

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Last Night's Injection

We chose to move forward and do the Progesterone in Oil injection last night.
It filled the entire syringe
I know a few of you thought it would be sweet for us to transfer on Brandon's birthday, but we didn't see it that way.  My past two birthdays, as well as our past two wedding anniversaries (along with many other events)  have been consumed with fertility treatment.  I had surgery the week after his birthday last year.  
We chose this path, but it is exhausting and often rules our lives.  I don't want it to seem like I'm complaining, because I'm not.  Just the thought a fertility event taking away my husband's birthday made me sad.  

God's plan will unhold as He sees fit.  

My husband is hilarious! 
 The Batman gave me an injection last night!! 
(Let the hot flashes and cramps begin!!!!!!!)

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Today's Appointment

This morning's appointment was pretty uneventful.  They did blood work and an ultrasound.  Laura went with me and I'm glad she was there.  She held my hand during the ultrasound part which typically causes me some pain.  On the ultrasound they saw a corpus luteum cyst which indicated ovulation (this is good).  They've already left word on my patient voicemail with my lab results:
  • estradiol 42.9
  • p4 10.9
The nurse gave me two options:  
A)  wait for AF to arrive on her own
B)  administer 3cc Progesterone-in-Oil Injection to ensure AF arrives on time.

At this point, I haven't talked to Brandon, but if I wait for AF (with no medicine) it will have our FET occurring on his birthday/ first day of football season.  

On a lighter note... here are a few random pictures from the day.

I love to plan! 



Randal and one of the many collages I have made her
Zombie - Creep