Thursday, November 29, 2012

Two Awesome Things and an FET

Two awesome things happened this week (both on the same day, in fact)!  I got a pretty amazing promotion and I finally successfully ordered that damned Nexus 4 phone.  Of course one of my first thoughts was, "Wow, my luck is finally turning around!  Maybe that means this cycle will work too!"  I don't actually think it works that way, though.  So, I'm trying to celebrate the positive things in my life without attaching them to anything else. If this cycle works, it will be a truly joyous end to 2012, and if it doesn't, well, I don't want that to take away from other accomplishments and good news.

It's been quiet in blog land here because I just haven't had a ton to say.  I was with my family for Thanksgiving, which was awesome, and I'm just sort of chugging through this cycle, which has involved so much less pain stress and hassle than the IVF cycle did.  Why, you might ask?  Well, here ya go:

  • one shot per night vs three shots per night - just the lupron, which is the easiest one, really
  • not growing a million eggs - ovaries not bloated and swollen and painful
  • no monitoring appointments - because i'm not growing a million eggs, i haven't had to go in for blood work and ultrasound (poke and prod) multiple times per week

The way the FET cycle (with my protocol) works is sort of simple.  Basically I'm on the Lupron to suppress my ovaries from doing what they naturally do (ovulate) and I'm on estrogen patches (Vivelle) to trick my uterus into thinking my ovaries are doing what they naturally do so that it develops the lining required for an embryo (or two) to implant.  That's pretty much that!

So, we had our only monitoring appointment for this whole cycle this morning, and it went well.  It was merely a prod, no poke (ultrasound, no blood draw) and it was solely to check the state of my lining and make sure it looked good and I had no fluid in there.  Lining is 8mm (good, apparently) and my ovaries are quiet with no large follicles (also good). We are set to move forward with the transfer.  So, I got my next set of instructions from the nurse, signed consent forms and the transfer was scheduled for Wednesday (December 5th).  We won't know what time until they call us on Monday, but it'll be more towards the middle of the day than last time because they do the Egg Retrievals first then the fresh transfers and then the frozen ones.  These are my instructions for the next weeks...  butt injections start on Saturday night. EEEEEEEEEEEEE.  Anyone been through 'em and wanna tell me how to not be terrified?

As an aside, one thing I found interesting - I woke up this morning with symptoms of ovulation - primarily a back ache.  It made me feel a little bit concerned that maybe the Lupron hadn't worked, but when we saw that I clearly had nothing in my ovaries to ovulate I mentioned it to the nurse practitioner who was doing my ultrasound. She said that yeah, it's normal and just another indication that the estrogen is working and my body really believes I am about to ovulate.  Something about that is really fascinating to my nerd brain.  I think that I just like how this process helps me really understand how my body works and what causes each thing.  When I ovulate each month and my back aches I know now that this is clearly not actually a pain caused by an enlarged ovary or the process of ovulating.  It must be something else.

As another aside, as you can see above, I'll have my pregnancy test on December 19th, which is the day before my birthday.  For our last cycle, I tested on October 19th, which was 4 days after Ian's birthday.

If my test comes back positive, I will have a second test 2 days later to make sure the hCG levels are rising appropriately.  If I am either not pregnant, or am pregnant and everything looks good, we'll be happy on our journey to Switzerland.  If not pregnant, I will drink tons of wine and eat so much non-pasteurized cheese I explode.  If pregnant, I will eat chocolate, and I'll have to be very very careful before I get on the plane to travel back home at the end of the trip.  If I have any any any odd symptoms at all, I'll have to make our friends in Zurich help me go to an Emergency Room for an ultrasound to make sure there's no ectopic pregnancy before I get on a plane and potentially have some rupturing and death occurring during my journey back home.

The third possibility, though, is one that will totally fuck up our trip.  If my pregnancy tests show a pregnancy, but are strange in some way (not high enough, not rising appropriately etc) I will not be able to travel and my trip will be cancelled.  That will suck big old donkey balls, but Ian and I decided it was worth the risk.  (The only other option would be to cancel this cycle entirely.  No thank you.)

With that, I shall sign off.  But first, here are some fine images to show you the State of Sharon's Mid-Section (both taken in my work bathroom, cause I'm classy like that).

This is my belly (as of a couple of days ago).  Here you shall see some bruises from where I've hit blood vessels (the one that you can barely see is now as big and purple as the one that is more visible in this photo) and my 4 estrogen patches along with a bunch of leftover adhesive from the previous patches.  I finally went yesterday and got some baby oil and scrubbed all that adhesive off before applying 4 fresh patches last night. 

And here's my back!  I have one of these circles drawn with sharpie on each side (by the nurse) so Ian knows where to aim the Progesterone injections.  He was told that he has to be quick and basically throw them in like a dart (without letting go like you would with an actual dart).  Good times. You can see that this isn't really my butt, it's more my hip/almost back.  Whatevs.  Butt enough.


  1. good luck on your FET! it is much more simple than an IVF and i enjoyed it so much more. Make sure you give yourself time to rest when you need it :)

  2. Eeek, I'd try to get some of those Valiums for the butt injections too ("butt injections" are more fun to say than "lower side back injections"). But as I think I already mentioned I am a giant wuss.

    Good luck!

  3. Damn that is a good looking belly! :)
    Are ectopic pregnancies much more likely when you are going through this business?

    1. Yeah, I believe so...I just did some super fast research and it looks like the normal rate is .67% or something and with ivf it's like 2%. So still a sort of low risk, but more than twice as likely than in a non-ivf pregnancy.