Today I was eating an okonomiyaki which looks very unhealthy but is actually just a vegetable pancake. I was sitting in the food court of our local humongousaur shopping centre and listening to MC Solaar. Whenever I listen to my ipod when I'm out in a crowd, I feel as though I'm in a movie and the music I'm listening to is the soundtrack.
I'd been to Medicare to get the refund for our stupid last dumbfuck failure of a cycle (thanks Australian government for subsidising that cost -> $900 instead of $4900). Medicare pissed me off some but I was ok with the cost, my tax refund will pay for all our IVFs thank goodness. My boobs have been hurting since the egg pickup and if I actually had any chance of being pregnant I would totally be psyched up because of these mo-fo sore nipples, so that had been pissing me off too. And I'm pretty sure today is 2 days before my period will arrive cause I feel like emotional-shite.
So, MC Solaar had his cool French groove going while I ate and people-watched. So many people, doing their thing. Feeding themselves, chatting with friends, texting with mobile phones, staring into nothing.
And then my eyes got sucked to one bright blue spot at 1 o'clock. This one woman, in her thirties with a 6 year old son and a new, new baby in a bright blue onesie. Sitting down cradling him, talking to her older child, propping baby up to look around the busy room.
I stared at that baby and that woman. And thought. And teared up. Then I put down my fork and scurried away. Head down, bustling and busy and indistinguishable from the rest of them. I stifled the sobs and I left.
I have been looking at these and contemplating which acupunturist I shall visit.
I am going to make this last shot count goddammit. Even if it takes suspending my sceptical side and poking my body with more needles. The Big Guy doesn't want to do any more IVFs after this last one. The Australian goverment have decided to change the way we get money back from Medicare (public health system) and as such any further IVFs after Jan 01 2010 would be more self-funded than at present.
I booked an appointment with another specialist for a second opinion about the next protocol to try. The docs at my clinic are all over the shop with ideas and I do not have a primary care physician. I am doing IVF through the public system and as such I belong to the clinic and I see whichever resident/consultant is available when I'm there. This is frustrating me. As is the cookie cutter approach to protocols to try irrespective of my poor response.
I've had a lot of nightmares lately. Zombies eating my face and zombie-fying me and those I love; driving off the top of a skyscraper, falling and knowing I was about to die (woke as I crashed into the next building); that my mother had killed herself (just like my father) and I was screaming-crying in my sleep and woke with a closed throat and a heavy heavy heart.
I want a baby.
I did get a lovely blog award a while back from the delightfully sweet Kate at I Can't Whistle and I wasn't sure what to do with it but now I am. Here's my five nominees, some well-known, others not so. I appreciate you all.
We got 2 eggs, we got 2 embryos. The nurse called me on Saturday afternoon with a transfer time for Sunday. All was looking good.
Then the Dr called me this morning and as soon as he said "Hello, it's Dr H" I knew.
The embryos had arrested overnight and there's nothing to transfer.
All that money and effort and pain and sadness and hope for nothing.
Editing to add: It's late night now and because I'm not making babies I cooked Chicken Cacciatore and Oatmeal Choc Chip Cookies instead. Comfort food. I've eaten about 8 cookies so far. So has the Big Guy. We're teary and getting fat together.
1 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
2 tbsp milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour (plain flour for us Aussies)
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 1/2 cups oats (rolled or "quick," but not "instant")
2 cups chocolate chips (about 12-oz.)
Preheat the oven to 350F (180C). Line a baking sheet with baking paper.
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and the sugars until mixture is light in colour. Beat in the eggs one at a time, followed by the milk and the vanilla extract.
In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Either by hand or with the mixer on low speed, gradually beat the flour in to the sugar mixture until just incorporated.
Stir in the oats and chocolate chips by hand. And OMG the bowl is heavy by now.
Drop 1-inch balls of dough onto the cookie sheet, placing about 1 1/2 inches apart so they have room to spread.
Bake at 350F for 10-13 minutes, until golden brown at the edges and light golden at the centre.
Cool on baking sheet for at least 1-2 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
I'm trying not to. Thanks JB and everyone else. Your comments mean so much to me. To know that I am cushioned in a supportive community who gets it. That's just beautiful.
All will be well. I will be ok. Sadness passes. It all passes. And Kate is right on with her comment on my last post - it is a better response than last time. And there's enough time to grow the littlies some more. And those big 'uns should have some nice mature eggies inside. Complete with tramp stamps and strappy high heels.
Follicle report - day 8 of stimming...
On my left side I have 1 x 18mm and 2 x 12mm.
On my right side I have either 1 x 16mm or 2 x 14mm (she couldn't tell if it was one larger, or two with one in front of the other).
Fuckdamn. That's completely fucked and I feel like I'm living July all over again.
At this stage last time I had a 16mm, a 15mm and an 11mm.
This time I have 4, maybe 5 follicles and my right ovary woke up.
Last time I stimmed for another 3 days and collected the eggs 4 days after that scan - only the 16 and the 15 had good eggs.
This time the nurse thinks that I will stim for another 5 days which will most likely over-ripen the 18mm and the 16 if it's a 16.
Best case is that the 16 is actually 2 x 14's and they and the 2 x 12's ripen up nicely and I get 4 eggs.
But they are all such different sizes. I may only get 1 usable egg.
I hate this.
Edited to add: I'm triggering on Wednesday for a pickup on Friday. The decision has been based on the biggest follicle. I hope the littlies catch up and have mature eggs in them by Friday. Must remember that they grow by 1-2mm per day so I can get a maximum 8mm more growth.That would be enough for those 12mm follicles, surely?
I am trying not to be nervous about tomorrow's appointment with the dil.do cam. I am mostly succeeding. I keep reminding myself that I have lived through a bad outcome ... last time I had 3 follicles, a comatose right ovary and only 2 eggs retrieved ... that was crappy. But I've done that once now and should it happen again I have the hopefulness of knowing that that crappy cycle gave me two embryos to tranfer. Duds apparently, but at least we were in with a chance with them.
Deep breaths. All will be as it will be regardless of my feelings.
On a much more pissed-off note, we have been without functional heating all week. We got home from Fiji (where we were all toasty-warm) to a cold cold house in this cold cold Melbourne winter. Turned the heating on only to find an error message indicating an overheating issue and the fan blasting cold air throughout the house. This was rectified by going under the house and disconnecting the power to the heating unit.
On Monday I told the agent, who faffed around until Wednesday before sending a plumber. Plumber said "It's got an electrical fault, I can't fix that, you need the central heating people to come." He told the agent, who told the landlord. Landlord refused to get the heating people out. On Thursday I had our agent on the phone who told me to do all the overheating checks (no vents covered, ensure inlet is not blocked, turn off power - all of which I had done already) and call him back in a couple of hours. 3 hours later the heater is dead again and he finally admitted that the landlord DIDN'T BELIEVE THAT THE HEATER WAS BROKEN and won't pay for repairs. We have to fork out hundreds of dollars to get said heater fixed and then chase the landlord for the money through the rental tribunal!! Amazing. What a complete fuckwit our landlord is. It's been as low as 7 degrees Celsius (44F) here at night and we've been freezing. Heating is classed as an essential item (especially in winter) and they were supposed to have it fixed within 2-3 days. Bastards. Complete bastards.
I want a warm uterus and warm ovaries. I'm sure I read some Chinese medicine stuff about needing my precious girlie bits to be warm.
IVF diet queries currently rattling around in my head.
Why am I trying to eat a high protein diet? Why is there so much conflicting information about pineapple (bromelain & selenium containing)? Maybe I should just be taking supplements of Brom & Se? Ought I avoid wheat? Should I be drinking full-fat milk? What about chocolate, can I still gorge on eat that? Is it worth my while to start taking CoQ10?
Will what I eat help get me pregnant? That's what I really want to know.
And fook. The injections are hurting this time round. Last cycle I think my brain was too busy thinking I was going to get a rush from the shots to bother with the ouchiness. This time my brain has realised there is no rush. Poor amazed brain, it's not dealing with all the little screaming nociceptors in my tender belly flesh so it's sending "Run for the hills" messages when the needles approach. Which is making the jabbing both painful and hesitant.
To combat this I have tried: 1. Sitting down, lining it up and slowly pushing the needles in = ouch 2. Sitting down, lining it up and then not looking as I jab myself = ouch 3. Standing up and fast-sticking myself = not-so-ouchie.
I'm going to try number 3 again tonight and see if I can repeat the non-ouch performance.
I'm feeling relaxed about this cycle (thankyou Fiji). Haven't been obsessive about the jabs, haven't googled anything about the Flare vs whatever rates. Haven't had a tizzy fit at the Big Guy, all in all (at this very early stage) I'm feeling good. Hopeful and good.
I'm due a stim scan on Monday to see how many follicles I'm growing (please God I get more than last time) so we'll see how my cool, calm and collected self is going then.
Cranky-pants vent from me - actually it's a jealous-vent. The Big Guy (@badhusband, follow him and tell him how naughty he is) is going to San Francisco at the end of October and I'm eaten alive with envy. He's off to the Google Summer of Code Mentors conference cause he's a Big Clever and Helpful Guy and his open-source program/organisation participated in the SoC. I was going to be going with him but then we did the Fiji thing because we're complete suckers and we got talked into a stupid Wyndham vacation trial (don't do it, it's not worth it in the end) and the only place we could book was Fiji and so we went there and now he's going to the USA without me.
Without ME. Can you believe it? Why can't we be kazillionaires and have me go too?
Bula! 'Cause that's what we say, us Fiji-tourists.
We also say "Why yes, I will have another cocktail", "I think I'll have a nap" and "Did I get sunburned?"
We had a great time, the Big Guy and I. We slept a heap (though our bed was incredibly uncomfortable), we swam and snorkelled,
we fished (that's my first barracuda catch!)
and sailed (that's me beside the guitarist, laughing at a piece of cake).
All in all, it was the most relaxing holiday I have ever had. Ever.
But a couple of minutes ago, I injected Lucrin because, you guessed it, the magical "take a holiday and relax" pregnancy did not occur. Not that I really thought it would, but hey - I had some hope. It's the end of CD2 as I type and I start jabbing with 300iu Gonal-F tomorrow in this brave new world of the Flare cycle.
I'm taking my hope with me into this new cycle. I've noticed that hope is the new black in the IF circles. Except without being ... you know ... black. Of course. Because black is dark and deep while hope is light and airy and not black at all.
I'm going to be light and airy and hopeful. So there universe.
Oh, as an aside, I prefer Mudslides to Pina Coladas and I didn't like getting caught in the rain. And there was no midnight jiggy-jig in the sand but plenty on our hard bed.
I'm a happy wifey to the Big Guy, a researcher, a worker, a mum and a step-mum. tBG and I started trying for a baby together in Feb 2008 (as soon as we got married) but we got diagnosed with secondary infertility in Jan 2009 and I got hit with a premature peri-menopause diagnosis in early 2010. We did 5 IVF cycles between May 09 and June 10. None of them worked. Full blown menopause at 42. Oh, and I'm also in the process of finishing my PhD. Unsurprisingly, my head is way too full so some of the dross is spilling out here.
pundelina AT Hotmail DOT com
PS. It was 4 years between the premature menopause diagnosis and hitting post-menopause. Whoa.