Monday, February 21, 2011

Relaxation only lasts so long

We're back from a lovely week in Hawaii. It was very low-key. I snorkeled one morning, but otherwise read by the beach or pool while my husband snorkeled, body surfed, and scuba dived. I'm certified for scuba, but am nervous about ocean dives, so I decided to skip it.

The weather was great, which is one of the predictable things about Hawaii. We didn't even get any rain during our week. At home in California it was rainy and cold. And is still really cold, but not raining until the weekend. (Really cold = highs in the low 50s -- you snow-bound folks can now laugh at me.)


For those of you who have been following along, I expected to have a monitoring appointment on Sunday and start stims on Monday. Well, that was based on AF coming before/during my vacation. Which it didn't.

I'm annoyed, because I told my clinic that I was very uncertain about when my last period was, and they said it really didn't matter. I now suspect that the bleeding that finally ended at the beginning of February was probably the end of AF. Which means starting estrace on February 7 was probably pre-ovulation, as was the Ganirelix.

No idea what that means for priming my follies, but I rather suspect it isn't good. I emailed my RE on Thursday night (from Hawaii) and my clinic relayed that he said to keep taking the Estrace.

I'm mildly annoyed at my body for not being easier to read, and more annoyed with the clinic for not listening to me. A blood test could have indicated where in my cycle I was.

Now I have no way to estimate when retrieval and transfer will be. If the estrogen priming cycle was wasted, that would push us back an entire month. If it wasn't wasted, then it'll depend on when AF shows. Today would have been counted as CD2 if I'd started stims.



I'm having some trouble reading new baby blogs and tweets right now. Please don't take it personally if I stop reading/commenting, it's just not where my head is at, and I'm trying to avoid the negative feelings that sometimes/often arise. I'm thrilled for those of you that made it to the finish line.

amiracle4us asked about my immune treatment in the comments of my last post...

For IVF #1, we did two shots of Humira, two weeks apart, pre-stims, and then did Intralipids starting with a positive pregnancy test (so roughly 4 weeks and 7 weeks). Before the treatment, my RE rated my NK levels as a 4/5 (where 5/5 is worst, and 0/5 is normal). After the Humira I was down to a 1/5.

For IVF #2, we did Intralipids -- one pre retrieval during stims, and then none after because of the cancelled cycle.

For IVF #3, we did two shots of Humira, two weeks apart, pre-stims (bloodwork a week after the shots got me to a 0/5 -- completely normal NK and TH1:TH2 levels), an Intralipid with retrieval , another after the positive pregnancy test, and had another scheduled for 3 weeks later. When I had the first ultrasound with my ob/gyn, it was a day or two before the scheduled Intralipid. Because the heartbeat was low, he did an unplanned Intralipid right after the ultrasound in case immunological factors were involved in killing off the embryo. (Which turned out not to be the case - it was a chromosonal abnormality.)

I asked my RE why he wanted to do an Intralipid with retrieval even though I was showing completely normal NK and TH1:TH2 levels, and he said it's easier to stay ahead of things instead of being reactive to increasing levels.

IVF #4 has involved the 2 shots of Humira during what's hopefully my estrogen priming cycle, and I'll repeat the bloodwork after AF to see if my levels are normal or not.

Hope that helps!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Where in the world... I in my cycle? Honestly, I have no idea. Every couple of days I'm spotting-to-almost-bleeding. But apparently it doesn't matter since the estrogen + ganirelix will override things. (I remember being dubious about the estrogen/ganirelix starting on a certain date even with no LH surge, but it all worked out...)

I started estrace this morning, take my second shot of Humira tonight (first was two weeks ago), and start three days of Ganirelix tomorrow. My period will show up probably over the weekend, but since I'll be in Hawaii for a week, I'll keep taking the estrace and go in for an ultrasound on Sunday the 20th.

In other news, Moon on Stick kindly awarded me my very first blog award: the Stylish Blogger award! (I think Sass deserves the credit for the stylish part, though... She generously gave out some free blog designs, and I lucked out and won one! Thanks, Sass!)

Here are the rules for the acceptance of the award:

Thank and link back to the person who awarded you the award.
Share 7 things about yourself.
Award 15 other bloggers.
Contact these bloggers and tell them about the award.

Here are 7 things about me that don't normally come up in the regular course of writing this blog:

1) I took ten years of French -- starting the summer before kindergarten, and going through Junior year of high school. Until high school, it was all with a tutor, so my written French was terrible, although my accent was impeccable. Sadly, I don't use it except on rare trips to French-speaking countries, but occasionally dream in French so clearly it's still in my brain!

2) I considered singing as a profession. In junior high, my school put on a musical and I LOVED it. I started taking voice lessons, continued through high school, ended up auditioning for and getting accepted to the music department at my college during my first semester (I was there for a regular, career-oriented degree), and then ran out of steam after two semesters of juggling two completely separate class loads. I still love to sing and have done a bunch of community theatre as an adult. I recently started taking lessons again, and am having a blast.

3) I've worn glasses or contacts since I was 8, and got LASIK two weeks ago (I'm now 35.) Every night I still have an almost uncontrollable urge to take out my contact. (EW!)

4) I've drag raced motorcycles on amateur night at a local speedway when I lived in New England. Whee!

5) I grew up without a television in the house. My whole family reads voraciously, and my parents still don't have cable -- they have a home entertainment system set up for DVDs and Netflix streaming, but no regular TV.

6) I read really fast. I love my Kindle because I can finally bring enough books with me on vacation to keep me fed the whole time. My husband once measured and he guessed I read 12 times faster than him. (He's a particularly slow reader, however, so keep that in mind.)

7) I collect children's books illustrated by Errol Le Cain. One of the books I most remember from when I was a kid is his version of The Twelve Dancing Princesses. Aren't the drawings stunning?

I'm going to give this award to the following fabulous bloggers:

Life and Love in the Petri Dish
The Birds and the Bees
Roccie Road
Alex's Adventures
Just Two Lines Away
One Egg Please
Trying not to scream
A little blog about the big Infertility
The Johnson's Journey
Wonky Wombs & Wacky Wickets
This is More Personal
Life of the Bees
Adventures in Infertility-Land
Still Searching For Our Golden Egg
WANTED: One Good Embryo

Ok, back to the glorious weather outside. Yes, it's on its way to 70 degrees today -- the weekend was gorgeous. Sorry, snow-bound peeps!