All Journal Entries Journals
Sort By:  

My Journey of the Last Six Years - 3

Feb 02, 2015 - 9 comments

Finally Pregnant!

Moving on…44 ½ and four embryos left. I thought long and hard about it and decided I wanted to transfer three and leave one behind. That probably sounds crazy, but I was done. I just felt that of all the obstacles we had experienced over the years, for some reason the gift of children was not in my cards. I began researching foster-adoption and was convinced this would be our only hope. Back to Chicago in February 2014 I went, this time alone, for what would be my fourth and final transfer. I had the most amazing pre and post transfer acupuncture sessions complimented by valium (highly recommend all of this for a transfer), and walked to and from the clinic in the crazy Chicago wind and snow, in spite of instructions otherwise. Instructions were out the window for me since I knew it wouldn’t work anyway. Ten days past my transfer my beta was scary high! I can no longer remember what it was, but it was potentially in the triplet range. It more than doubled two days later, and my six week scan revealed two perfect little sacs, one high and one low in the uterus. I was finally excited, but still so scared of another loss. My entire sixth week I bled on and off with large clots. I was convinced it was all over. I made it to my eight week scan and both little sacs were still there and looking perfectly on schedule! At my twelve week scan I cried because little tiny people with arms and legs were already visible!

Baby Girl has IUGR

I selected the best perinatologist I could find at the best hospital in Oregon to have a baby. My Dr was amazing and I still love him to this day. The pregnancy was smooth as butter until I hit 31.5 weeks when baby A, our girl was diagnosed with IUGR. She had gotten really skinny since her last measurements four weeks prior and was sending all nutrient reserves to her brain. Her placental cord wasn’t functioning optimally and I was told to expect delivering at 34 weeks. I was gutted. I was certain I would march to the end without complications. I read about other women who went through the same thing and began eating protein like a pack of wolves. I also took baby aspirin even though neither remedy convinced my Dr they would make a difference. I had fetal monitoring once a week and a Doppler ultrasound to measure cord flow once a week, so twice a week babies were being checked. Against the odds, baby A’s cord flow remained stable and I trudged along to 37 weeks 4 days. I never did go into labor in spite of my daily walks. We scheduled a c-section for October 23rd and would induce if both babies were head down.

The Birth at 45

October 23rd…we arrived at the hospital at 6:30 AM and yay! Both babies were head down! We began induction with a catheter to start dilation. We hit 4cm by the afternoon and I was stoked. On with the Pitocin. By 1 AM the following morning it was clear induction was not working. I was at the max dose of Pitocin with zero progress in dilation. My Dr wasn’t there yet but said he would come in for the delivery when I was ready. The resident Dr on duty broke my baby girl’s water to speed up labor as a last resort. For the next two hours I was slammed into labor at the speed of light and ultimately begged for the epidural. The contractions came on hard and fast and even still I refused to dilate! In spite of all these efforts to get the ball rolling, baby A’s heart rate was now going through late decels and after about an hour and a half of this, it was time to pull the plug and do a c-section. I was relieved honestly because I just wanted the babies out safe. I never had a birth plan, other than to bring the babies into the world safely.

October 24th @ 4:30 AM I was prepped for a c-section. It was after this that all hell broke loose and the surgery became a scene from a horror movie. I will spare the details, but the delivery was a disaster. Baby A, our precious girl was stuck in the birth canal with a failing heart rate that dropped below 60. Blood was just about hitting the walls and to this day I don’t have an answer as to why I lost so much blood. It felt like a millennium had passed before they got both babies out. My blood pressure jumped to something like 250/180 (normal for me is 115/65) and they pumped two different drugs into me to stop me from stroking out. No other answer exists for this other than stress, stress, stress. A NICU doctor finally came out and told us our boy was OK and on a c-pap for oxygen. Then the bad news…our girl could not be revived. Holy s----! Was this really happening to me???  I made it this far and once again I was about to experience another loss?! About five minutes later the NICU doctor returned and said they had successfully intubated her and she was on a ventilator. OMG, she was alive!
The next two weeks were fraught with worry. She was diagnosed with HIE and underwent the brain/full body cooling protocol. She had lost oxygen for almost 30 minutes and she didn’t even pass Apgar with a score of 7 until 30 minutes. She is a miracle gift who refused to die. She excelled quickly in the NICU and astounded the doctors and nurses. Exactly two weeks later she came home. We are cautiously optimistic about what lies ahead for her. We hope and pray to God that she passes her milestones if even just a little bit delayed, and proceeds with a healthy life.

When to Give Up

I know that some women feel it is important to never give up when TTC. I have to say that I feel differently. I think there is a time when we must give up and seek another means of starting a family, such as foster-adoption. You could say it’s easy for me to say this because I finally made it to the other side of the fence and successfully conceived and delivered, but at some point we really do run out of money, and stamina. I guess I just want for other women to feel like it is OK to give up, and seek another means of having a family. I was fortunate to receive the most amazing and precious gift anyone can ever give/receive in a lifetime, but for some who aren’t so fortunate, I believe barking up a different tree to achieve success is warranted.

Thank you Nina for the most precious gift I will ever receive in my lifetime. No other gift will ever come close to yours. Thanks to you, my six year journey finally ended and I became a mother at 45. I am blessed beyond belief.

My Journey of the Last Six Years - 2

Feb 02, 2015 - 1 comments

IVF with OE at 42

I have memory of about 6 IUI’s before we proceeded to my OE IVF cycle. In spite of minor mishaps like the most blood you’ve ever seen from someone on BC pills (even my RE was alarmed), and a non-hormone producing cyst (a biggie that was easily drained) I responded great to an antagonist protocol and a magical 12 eggs were retrieved. We were so happy! This was it! The 5 day blast transfer date just happened to be the date I was conceived, so we knew this was a slam dunk! My egg number quickly shrank to only 5 mature, only 4 that fertilized with ICSI, and complete arrested development at 2 days in the petri dish. Yep, my eggs were so unusually bad that not even a morula grew from them. Quickly deflated but bouncing right back, our WWW appointment topic moved on to donor eggs when my RE said he felt I stood less than a 1% chance of success with my eggs. It turns out this clinic is sooooo popular that every donor I chose on their website had a waiting list. At this stage I couldn’t imagine searching through a large database of donors. I was much happier with choosing someone local that was being exclusively monitored by that clinic. So, at first we picked one that was about to start a cycle for another couple, but we were told we’d be in line next, about a 4 month wait. Well, 2-3 weeks later we got a call saying that sorry, she would now not be available until June, an additional 2-3 month wait. To me this was far too unpredictable, so we moved on. Another donor appealed to us, but we were told her first cycle had not gone well and her ability to re-cycle was pending RE review. A week later we get a call, she’s available! Well, that was all good except we no longer felt good about using her since we had been told of the less than stellar results of her first cycle.

…I’m going to fast forward this and spare everyone the boring details…

IVF with DE at 43

Donor eggs didn’t end up working for us. After multiple reschedules at our wonderful local clinic I ended up going to a place in Santa Monica, CA that boasted success with frozen eggs. Although we ended up in a shared cycle with fresh eggs, we went through three blasts with merely a chemical and were deflated once more. By this time I was seriously worried about how to pay for more treatments since we’d blown a pile on my own eggs and then on donor eggs. We were scared to even use Gary’s guys again because we wondered if we both had bad material at this point, in spite of three different RE’s saying he looked perfect under the microscope.
Clinic number four…and a total of eight clinics consulted with.

Donor Embryos at 44

Thanks to being on Medhelp and cyber-meeting wonderful ladies on here, I thought to ask someone if she had any embryos left from her donor egg cycle and if she would be willing to donate them to us. What a crazy leap of faith, but what did I have to lose? I felt like someone had sucked all the air out of me when she said “yes.” I really couldn’t believe it. She was way ahead of me too because she had already considered doing it before I reached out. So the donation process began along with a consultation with my final RE and fertility clinic. For me, the light at the end of the tunnel would be when I never had to set foot in another fertility clinic again. I suspect I had one of the slowest lawyers in Oregon because it took us four months to wrap up the legal contract, which I think can go as quickly as two weeks normally! The cowboys of the West Coast never cease to amaze me. Anyway, I received six beautiful embryos and my first expected transfer date was in October, 2013. We flew to Chicago and met my amazing donor, and another beautiful woman and her husband who were the recipients of the other remaining six embryos. We had a fabulous dinner and I felt privileged beyond words to be invited into my donor’s home to meet her husband, family, and look at gorgeous family photos on the wall. We flew home a short three days later and my first beta at 10 days was 77. I was crying already since I knew this wasn’t too hot for a first beta. But, the next one two days later was 301, and the one after that over 600! I was on my way! At my six week scan we saw a single sac that was behind schedule. I had been cramping something fierce too and experienced an “episode” of serious pain where I nearly fainted at around five weeks. When I returned for my eight week scan the doctors were surprised I was walking. My right tube was the only carrier of this pregnancy. Somehow I had hobbled along for the last two weeks with blood loss and tons of pain, all the while thinking that pregnancy was just tough. In the hospital that night waiting for the surgery to start, I was already planning my next transfer.

Quote from two-handed artist.

Feb 13, 2013 - 0 comments

About Exquisite Art Videos
My name is Xiaonan and I'm a self taught artist.

I make these videos to relax your mind, calm your thoughts and uplift your mood. After all, today's people are so often stuck in thoughts, dealing with its worries and day to day concerns, that most rarely calm their minds down to feel the presence of the moment, which is the only thing there really is and ever could be.. and I want more people to be in this state more often, to see things not through the limited and rigid mind or the fearful ego, but through a heart that loves to express and create.

Estradiol too low for transfer?

Oct 31, 2012 - 12 comments

OK ladies, so I'm freaking out a little. My RE didn't get my estradiol level until this afternoon because the hospital is lame. Anyway it was supposed to be a stat test which means my RE would have had the result yesterday but never mind. So, I spoke with the nurse who said my RE would call me tomorrow but from what I am reading my E2 is low. I triggered last night for a natural FET on 11/6 and my E2 is only 109. I have been reading that your E2 should be between 200-600 with one mature 18mm follicle. Yesterday I had one mature 20mm follicle. Anyone know if this is significant? I won't know anything more until tomorrow. Crap.