Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Let the Mock Cycle Begin

It's official, CCRM is considering today cycle day 1. I started spotting on Sunday and today had what seemed like my period was taking off. Then it stopped and has returned to spotting. Regardless, my nurse has said they are counting it. I think considering my thin lining during last week's hysteroscopy, they didn't anticipate a heavy or even necessarily normal period.

The protocol:

Starting Thursday - February 27th
Vivelle Patch (starting with 1, will build up to 4 over the next few weeks)
Estrace (vaginally) 2x per day
Trental - 400 mg 2x per day
Vitamin E - 400iu 2x per day

Wednesday, March 5th
Estradiol check

Friday, March 7th
Add in Viagra Suppositories - 25mg 4x per day

Thursday, March 13th - JUDGEMENT DAY
Labs and ultrasound to see where my lining is.

Saturday, March 16th
Prometrium - 200mg (vaginally) 3x per day - This step will only begin based on the results my labs and u/s.

Monday, March 24th
Integrin Biopsy - This step could also change based on the labs and ultrasound from the 13th.

There's a lot of doubt in my mind right now. I've obviously been here before and so much rides on this. It's only a matter of whether I'm going to be the one to carry our child(ren)…no pressure, right?

Has anyone used the Trental in their protocol before? This is a new one for me, and I've never heard of it. The side effects sounded like a bowl full of JOY. (flu-like symptoms, laryngitis, malaise, dizziness, headache, nausea, vomiting, dry mouth, bloating and constipation) Seriously, am I going to be able to leave my house for the next 3 weeks? Would love, love, love to hear from any of you that are familiar with this.

I also emailed my acupuncturist tonight. These past 7-8 months I put that on hold since we hadn't been able to really do much. Now, I feel like if we're throwing the kitchen sink at this mock cycle, acupuncture seems like a no-brainer. Not to mention I love the guy I see. He's such a calming force and to be honest, has been someone that has been with me almost from the beginning, so the familiar, supportive face will be nice going into this.

I want to send out lots of positive vibes to Julia at Finding a Way Out of IF who's out in Colorado this week for her transfer. Wishing so much happiness and success for her trip!

Lastly, I can't help but throw out a big, giant congrats to Heidi at Hidden Infertility on her BFP and great first beta!! She's been through so much, that this seemingly long-shot cycle that has overcome the odds seems be a perfect ending to her infertility journey and her new beginning into a super happy and healthy 9 months!!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

CCRM…the update

I don't even know where to start. I'm so behind on an update that I should be embarrassed!

A lot (or at least it seems like a lot) has happened since my last post. I mean, if we were all confused before, you should hold on to your britches, because it certainly doesn't get any clearer. In typical fashion, everything has been nothing short of a hot mess.

My last recap said that I would start the mock cycle/hysterscopy regardless of "another" period. So last week, 4 days after my last progesterone pill, I was told to go in for an ultrasound and blood work to determine when I could come out for the HSC since I hadn't had a period. For whatever reason, CCRM refused to acknowledge the 5 days of bleeding I had while on the Prometrium as a period.

Well as usual, I know my body best. On cycle day 9 (from what I called CD 1) and only 4 days after stopping the progesterone and 14 days after my 3-week course of Estrace, I was ovulating. My labs were the following:

e2 - 1150
LH - 14.3
p4 - 2.5

Ultrasound showed a follicle on both sides, the one on the right being close to 26mm. Unfortunately, my lining was 3.8mm. (It's like my ovaries and my uterus are on completely different schedules)

My nurse at CCRM called to tell me that everything would have to wait for my next period. She couldn't understand why I would be ovulating. I told her the same thing happened last year on BCPS. I may have DOR, but people, I canNOT be suppressed. My ovaries just keep on going. Much to my displeasure at the moment.

I asked her what was the reason for the HSC being done on cycle day 5 - 13? I had thought that it was because it could 1) interrupt a pregnancy or 2) there needed to be a thin lining. I told her that per CCRM's instruction after my operative HSC, that we could have "relations" until after next period. So ultimately, there was no way I was pregnant.

Lets face it, if I can't get pregnant while having sex, we certainly aren't getting pregnant when we're not…

And obviously, my lining was thin.

After my begging and pleading, she said that she was going to talk to Dr. G about going forward with the HSC. After all, flights were booked, plans were made, even a little mini ski vacation was in the works. We were going to Colorado no matter what at this point. I was going to make darn sure that CCRM did something. I received a call back that night letting me know that Dr. G had said "lets do it".

On Sunday, we headed out to Denver. We spent the day in Boulder, drinking Bloody Mary's, shopping and enjoying the 60 degrees and sunshine.

Monday morning we got up extra early and headed up the mountain. I haven't been skiing in several years and I forgot how much I enjoy it. I cannot describe our time in Breckinridge any other way than for the first time in a long time, I felt pure joy. I wish I could have that feeling more often. Days where I don't think about infertility or the challenges we have faced these past three years.  

My appointment at CCRM is going to be more difficult for me to explain. While we did not receive bad news. I walked away pretty defeated.  

The good
The structure of my uterus is back to normal
There is no more scar tissue

The bad/unknown
My lining is still very thin throughout my uterus

While I knew my lining was thin last week in the ultrasound, for whatever reason, hearing him talk about it was pretty hard on me. I must be clear though. Dr. G was fairly optimistic. We'll be starting the mock cycle with my next period. Which should be in the next week. I know they are throwing the kitchen sink at my uterus to get it thicken up. What bothers me, is I ovulated on my own and after all that estrace and progesterone, it was no thicker than it was before the surgery. I know I'm not out, but I can't help to feel like this is a bit of foreshadowing for what's to come. Call it a gut feeling or a feeling of always waiting for the other shoe to fall…or maybe I'm just in need of a really big win to start believing again.

I know that many of you will tell me that things are looking up. We're going in the right direction. And You're absolutely right. On one hand, I know this. He could have come in and said, sorry, no go. We're done. He didn't. Like I said. It's very difficult for me to explain my feelings on this.

We flew back to Indianapolis yesterday and I was still struggling with my feelings of hopelessness. I had a bit of a melt down in the car on our way home from the airport. What absolutely blew me away was walking into my home to a package from Just Another Infertility Blog. I cannot begin to articulate how much she helped me by her kindness and thoughtful gift. A million thank you's to her. 

Have you ever seen cuter socks!?!? 

A million more thank you's to all of you that have sent me emails and texts this last week. It warmed my heart that even without updating my blog, you all remembered me and what we had going on. Nothing has made me feel more special through all of this, than all of you ladies. 

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Dazed and Confused

This was supposed to go in stages.

Stage I - Estrace for 3 weeks

Stage II - Progesterone for 10 days

Stage III - Start period and move into mock cycle, have a repeat HSC

Stage IV - IF my lining thickens as it should, do the integrin biopsy, if not repeat mock cycle

Stage V - DepoLupron for 2 months

Stage VI - FET cycle

So why is it that already, I'm fucking all of this up?! Or should I say, my body is?

Tuesday night, 4 days into my Prometrium, I started spotting. Weird. I think nothing of it. Wednesday morning, it's turning into a that pre-period brownish whatever. By that afternoon, there was no question, I was starting my period. And it's still going today.

So after 6 months of literally begging for a period, now I can't seem keep it away. I contacted my nurse at CCRM yesterday and she was not very helpful. I waited all day for a phone call only for her to tell me she needed to contact the doctor. Mmmmmm k. Then she called back to say, remain on the progesterone and call her next week with cycle day 1. I continued to ask her what if this is cycle day 1 and I don't bleed again next week. She just said "you should".

Come on people, lets be real. My body doesn't exactly do as it "should".

So after an evening of getting myself all worked up over questions like "does this mean if I don't bleed next week, that I'll have to wait another month for the mock cycle"? I have really waited long enough. I've been patient enough. This is NOT the answer I can even take at this point.

I decided this morning to email Dr. G. He's one of the few doctors at CCRM that does communicate so well through email, and I try to only bug him when I'm about to you know, flip the heck out. As soon as I hit send…I get an out of office reply. I almost cried on the spot. He's out of the office until next Tuesday and to expect delays next week on email responses.

Bless this man, because less than 5 minutes later, he responded to me. What he said, actually made sense. Why can't the nurses, if that's all we get to talk to, actually relay this stuff properly!?!?!

Dr. G said that he wants me to take the entire 10 days to ensure the lining is completely shed. I may or may not have a period after my last pill. If I don't within 3 days, they will still start my mock cycle and hysteroscopy at that time and will not delay the cycle.

Now that's a valid explanation. Thank you. I mean, it still confuses me a bit because I don't know what that means for cycle days, was yesterday cycle day 1? Or is cycle day 1, 3 days after my last Prometrium? I guess that's neither here nor there at this point, but you see my confusion?

So based on this information, I should be heading out to Denver the week of the 17th for my hysteroscopy. Luckily, this is the "easy" one in the office (if there is such a thing).

Have I ever mentioned that Prometrium makes me one cranky little gal?? Well it does. I'm a real treat right now.

T was doing impressions of my "permanent scowl" the other day. Funny. Very funny. If only I had a picture of that to post, it would have been priceless.