On the fifth day of clomid…

Nothing! Well, not nothing. I’ve had some mild headache/nausea this week and wierd mini hot flashes but that’s it.  No crazy mood swings, nothing overwhelming.  I am taking a pretty low dose which probably explains it but I am so relieved to not have any added intensity this week.  Through a combination of bureaucratic issues, low morale, and increase in both caseloads and acuity, my job has been running me ragged.  I am doing my best to stay relaxed but you know how that goes. Telling myself repeatedly, “You have to stay calm!”, isn’t as soothing as it sounds. Last weekend, we had actually had sun (!) and moderate temperatures and I spent the whole time outside with friends doing lots of hiking, talking, distracting…. That seemed to work well. I’m relieved that another weekend is dangling in front of me and the days until my mid-cycle scan are dwindling. Hooray!

And now, a lovely, distracting memory of snowshoeing last weekend:

 

 

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Hitching a ride on the Clomid train…

Well, we are now headlong into our first clinic-assisted attempt.  Today is day 3ish (started late on Friday) and I went, as scheduled, to see Dr B for my baseline ultrasound. Thanks to everyone’s favorite, the dildocam, we were able to get a good look at my follicles: 7 on the left and 5 on the right.  The good news is that my right ovary is making eggs post-surgery (hooray!) and, thus, is viable as believed.  The less-than-great news is that, for a woman of 33, I should have more than 12 follicles (should be closer to 15-20, according to Dr B).  This discovery was followed by Dr B saying, “Well, the one thing you have going for you is your age.’ Oh, good. I’ll take that. I guess one thing is better than nothing.  Twelve isn’t the end of the world but it does mean that, combined with the endometriosis, the likelihood of natural cycle working is pretty small. So, change of plans. Those discussing violent rhetoric in politics should spend an afternoon in the fertility clinic.  There is lots of talk of ‘little guns’ and ‘BIG guns’ and being MORE aggressive! Sooner!

New recommendations by Dr B: 4 Clomid trials. If ineffective, then IVF.

I asked her three times in three different ways if she really felt like there was a reasonable chance that these trials could work. She said that there is a good enough chance that we should not go straight to IVF but that we wouldn’t try to 6 tries as one might under other circumstances. None of this was very surprising to me and I know that, in the grand scheme of things, Clomid is considered a ‘little gun.’ Still, I was  a little bit dazed by how quickly everything changed in under 2 minutes. I know I am going to have to get used to that.

As I adjusted to the ‘new plan,’ I mostly just stared at Dr B’s giant pregnant belly as she told me about her maternity leave beginning next week and who would be covering her patients. I was so caught up in my thoughts that it wasn’t until she handed me a prescription and sent me to get labs that I realized this meant the ‘new plan’ started now.  As in, this Clomid train is leaving the station, you better hop on…

I’m hopping! I’m hopping! I should be excited and hopeful and positive but, for right now, I’m not.  I wish I wish wish that I was filled joyous optimism instead of anxiety and dread.  I’m trying to remember how to get back to that place where things seem not only possible but probable. I have a week or so to get there.

I head back for my mid-cycle ultrasound on 2/2 so they can assess how I responded to the Clomid and see if an egg or two is emerging.  Then, try, try again.

And *now* the pee stick works?!

I couldn’t help myself.  Multiple days of fertile CM and I just took the test on a whim. Out of curiosity, really, and an inability to stop myself. There it was: the long sought-after smiley face. Even stranger, is the fact that I am currently on CD 16 which is totally unheard of for me. As you may remember, I am a dyed-in-the-wool Day-22 (or more) ovulator. It’s a moot point right now since KD isn’t available this weekend (we didn’t think we’d be able to try this soon after the surgery).  Of course, the anxious part of me is dying watching a chance go by without a try.  Still, the new rah-rah-2011 part of me is okay accepting this purely as a good omen. Something is different, something is working…

The fertility factory MD told me that the endometriosis removal shouldn’t shorten my cycle at all and, yet, here I am. She said a lot of things actually though nothing too new or surprising.  She reviewed my history, gave us the reproductive functioning lesson, complete w/ drawings and statistics and then reviewed our options. As expected, she said that Stage IV Endometriosis means there is a good chance we will end up at IVF but not an absolute chance. There are many women who successfully get pregnant with IUIs particularly in the months following their laparoscopy. In her opinion, we should absolutely begin with IUIs post-surgery since, in her opionion, we haven’t really had a fair chance to get pregnant.  She did acknowledge that it would be a waste of time and money, however, to linger too long on the IUIs if they seem unsuccessful.

So, the plan:

1-2 natural cycle IUIs-if BFN then

3 clomid cycle IUIs-if BFN then

IVF.

I am in the middle of my cycle right now so I am anticipating getting back on the fertility tilt-a-whirl in the next few weeks.

For now, I am putting one foot in front of the other and staring straight ahead.

Today is the day!

First appt w/ Fertility Factory (as they say) is today at 2:30p.   Nervous? Check. Excited? Check.

I also met w/ my OB-GYN surgeon for my post-op appt this week.  I just adore her. She showed me lots of pictures and walked me through my surgery and fertility prognosis.  I learned that there was in fact additional endometriosis all over my pelvic floor. It seems that both my parents and M missed this fact because they were focused on her discussion of my reproductive organs. Still, the good news is that they got the rest of the information right: My right ovary is still viable despite it’s slimmer size, my left ovary is totally clean as are my fallopian tubes and my uterus which look healthy and good. There was tissue in my uterus that indicated that I had ovulated that month-more good news. Also, the surgery cleared all the endo-junk out of my pelvis. The Ob-Gyn felt that my chances of getting pregnant are very good, especially right now, as I basically have a clean slate.  She felt that the clinic will likely start w/ IUIs as there is no reason to think at this stage that they won’t work.  Of course, there are LOTS of reasons to think they won’t work but I’m choosing to ignore thinking that way right now 🙂

The other good news is that I called my insurance company today. The first time I called, they told me no coverage for any fertility stuff, for any reason.  Today, on a whim, I looked in my benefit statement and saw otherwise.  I called again and, this time, was told IVF is not covered (which I knew) but IUIs, fertility drugs related to IUIs and other services are covered at 50%. Clearly, this is not amazing coverage but it sure is a LOT  better than nothing, assuming it is appropriate to start w/ IUIs.

And, so, with utter patience and armed w/ my new 2011 positive attitude, I wait for 2:30. Let the games begin… well, let them begin again