Thursday, October 1, 2015

Having Faith Through Trials

It is so crazy how God uses times like this to stretch our faith.  I mean, C and I really believed we would get pregnant the first try again with our December 2014 IVF. Ha!  It has almost been one whole year of starting IF treatments for baby #3, and no bambino!  I think that would have been to easy for God.  I think he would rather use this time to grow our faith and give us an amazing story to share with others to give Him all the glory.  I mean, Rocco and Maximus's story just keeps getting more and more miraculous, if I don't say so myself!

How on earth we every conceived, let alone conceived twins, is beyond my brain.

Born with a Septated Uterus
Two surgeries to remove it.
Have MTHFR gene mutation (everyone with PCOS does, apparently)
Husbands sperm cannot penetrate my eggs (reason unknown)
Almost complete IVF failure
TWO healthy gorgeous boys born Aug. 5, 2011


When I sit and reflect on that, I'm just blown away.  Now, how can I be upset that this time hasn't gone as planned!?  Yes, it is painful, yes, we wish it worked the first time, but then God wouldn't have answered our very first prayer of starting this journey for #3, which was, "Lord, please give us just enough!"  One of our fears was having left over embryos.  Now we won't.  We've used them all, or are about to. Each one will have been placed where it was supposed to go.  They have all been prayed over.

We are currently doing a bible study on faith.  I have to say the timing couldn't be more perfect.  One of the the things I've been struggling with isn't faith, because I believe our God can do anything (see above), but trusting that he will do it again for me.  TRUST has been such a big word for me as we go through this.  It is a scary thing to put all of your trust in something/someone.  I was really convicted about this, going through FET #4.  I wanted to put a wall up, go through the motions, so my heart won't break again, but that is not trusting in what He can do.  I am going to believe in the impossible.

"According to your FAITH, will it be done to you." Matthew 9:29

My faith is strong, My trust is finally catching up, I am believing and praying for our miracles.

Our tentative transfer date is going to be October 16th.  Prayers appreciated :)

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Results of Endo Biopsy.


This means that my uterus is ready to go, and had been ready to go these last three try's.  This means that there is nothing more we can do.  This means that we continue to put the lives of these embryos in our Fathers hands.  This means that we continue to pray that they will make a life, each of them.


I trust in His plan and his will for my life and these embryos lives.  I have surrendered to His design.


Sunday, September 20, 2015

Change of Plans...

I had been feeling very unsettled, and frustrated, to say the least. This last month, while on "Reset," I emailed Dr. R.  Dr. R moved full time to the Beverly Hills office and no longer does appointments in the Orange County office, where I am.  I had been feeling like I was slipping through the cracks.  No one was taking charge of us, or being our advocate.  Here is my email, copied and pasted...

Hi Dr. R!

I called your office to make an appointment, but your first avail was Sept 17 and I should be starting a new cycle next week.  Sorry, I didn't call sooner!  We are actually in Hawaii right now and enjoying the 'break,' but are ready to try again.

So, this is where we are at.  We have two 'just okay' six day embryos left, which is why we want to transfer both AND this will also be our last time trying.  If these don't work, we want to close this chapter and just enjoy our family of four, which we are beyond blessed with and so thankful for!

However, since this is our last time trying, we want to make sure we do EVERYTHING right and ask all the right questions.  This can be our follow up! :)

1. Why do you think the last three transfers didn't take? Bad embryos? Bad batch?  Does my body not like frozen embryo's?  

2. Before my last transfer, I asked the nurse about doing assisted hatching.  She said that is usually done at the time the embryo's are made and before freezing.  Is this true?  Do we have this option? Do you think this will help?  If it is an option, why has no one suggested it?

3. I did a little reading, I googled specifically, "three failed FET's,"  and found that uterine scratching/biopsy gave a 20% increase in implantation. Do you do this?  Should we do this?

4. What else if anything can we do to make this cycle successful?

5. I also read that Immune problems can cause your IVF to be unsuccessful.  I know I've already been pregnant and given birth, but could I have something new?

6.  Can we have Christine be our embryologist at transfer time?  :)  Looking forward to going to back to Redondo.

7. Do the different offices of Rep Partners have different success rates?

Okay I think that is all!  I wish I had you for all of my other transfers, but I'm hoping to make this last one a taker!  Praying for our take home baby! :)

Thank you Dr. R!

Chris and Sara
It took him FIVE days to respond.  I felt like I was bothering him.  Apparently they over book at the BH's office, and they even had Kim Kardashian as a patient, so that makes them more in high demand.
Anyway, my nurse had to call him before I could get a response!  His reply's were short and didn't really give me much of anything for comfort.  No other plan.
Here is his response...
Sara and Chris
I hope that you enjoyed (or are still enjoying) your vacation.
I understand your wanting to  transfer 2 embryos.  You just need to acknowledge the risk and understand the risk of twins.
1)      I do not know what you haven’t conceived.  Everything looks great.  It could be simply that we have found the normal embryo(s) for this cycle yet.
2)      We routinely hatch embryos when we do day 3 transfers and in day 5 when the zonas (the “shell”) is thickened.  We can do it if you want on the embryos prior to transfer.  We just have to get the lab a note
3)      Uterine scratching does not work.  We thought it did but more information has been generated and most MDs feel that it is not helpful.
4)      ???
5)      Nothing immunologic that we know of will be helpful in your case.
6)      If you want Kris to help, we can asked her.
7)      The clients are different so the successes are a little different but these differences are NOT real.
Dr. R
This gave me no hope. Except, maybe we just haven't found our one good embryo?  I wasn't settled.  I messaged another Dr in the practice anonymously on a forum they have. He replied that it was true that the scratch has now been found to not really add to anything, but suggested a biopsy of my lining, that will also include the scratch so when "next year they find it to work again, you will have done it!"
BAM!  I like how this doctor thinks! 
However, I no longer felt comfortable to email of ask Dr. R.  I called my nurse, she called Dr. R, and asked him to call me, I received a text from him that said, "yes, that is probably as good idea."
Seriously!? Probably!? Probably is not good enough for me!  I need to hear a definitive yes or no!  The next morning I called again in tears.  I spoke to Patty, she is so sweet, and totally understood my frustration.  I spoke with Dr. A, whom I also totally trust.  She told me that she was surprised I came up with the Endometrium biopsy on my own and that she wanted to suggest it to me after our last appointment, but I wasn't her patient!  I told her that Dr. R had stopped being my advocate after he moved and I was slipping through the cracks.  She agreed.  She scheduled me for the following day.
The following day, which was this past Friday, I had Endo Scratch/biopsy done!  It wasn't bad at all, and I'm usually such a baby.  I took 800 mg of ibuprofen, said a prayer asking the Lord to take away the pain, and I barely felt cramps.  It took less than five minutes and felt like a pap smear at most.  I've been spotting the last couple days and have had ZERO pain, and the bleeding is now stopping.
With only two embryo's left, I really wanted to make sure we crossed all of our T's and dotted all of our i's.  I just couldn't go through another FET doing the same thing and hoping for the best.  I will get the result of the biopsy at the end of the week.  They are looking for inflammation or an infection which is pretty common and asymptomatic.  If all is normal, at least we did the scratch! 
We were supposed to transfer this coming Friday, but now Dr. A had me start prometrium to start my period.... then we will do our last and final FET.
Sorry this post was so long!  I had so much to get off my chest.  I honestly believe, God is using this time to grow my faith, and help me to trust him MORE... even if nothing comes from all of this. The day of my break down, I was feeling not only frustrated with my doctor care, or lack there of, but also frustrated that I wasn't seeing a clear cut path on what we should do, like we did with the boys.  When we went through IVF with the boys, I was calm, I felt peace and totally trusted the Lords leading.  I've felt lost this time.  I realized that day, that I needed to give these embryos over to the Lord, they are his after all, not mine.  Just like I did in the past.  I pictured the cross up on a hill, and a duffle bag, with "embryos" written across it.  I push it to the cross, because he promises to carry our burdens for us!
"Then Jesus said, 'Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you.  Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is east to bear and the burden I give you is light." Matthew 11:28-30
I can honestly say, I feel peace.  No matter the outcome, I know I can trust Him, and I know his plans are for good.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Our last chance....

I want to start by thanking those of you who commented on my last post.  Thank you for your kind words and words of encouragement.  I definitely needed some time to mourn the loss of yet another embryo and chance to give Rocco and Maximus a sibling.  C was very devastated too. He thought for sure our third embryo would be a taker.

The past month has been so good for us.  A break from TTC, and a chance to just be 'us' again.  Breaks are SO good!  Its hard taking breaks especially the older I am getting, and I'm sure some of you can relate.  I'm 34, and I always said I would be done by 35, God always has a way of changing our plans doesn't he?

But here we are, we have two "okay" embryos left.  We are transferring both. Its funny what IF does to a person.  In the beginning, C was VERY adamant about only wanting one baby, and only transferring one embryo.  But after almost 1 year since we started the journey for #3, we just want a healthy baby or two!  We want better chances, and to be done.  IF takes such a toll every month.  Every negative or loss is heartbreaking, and it takes time to recover again.

My boys ask me for a baby sister.  Just yesterday Rocco said, "I want God to give me a baby sister."  I replied, "I want God to give you a baby sister too!  Sometimes God says 'no' or 'not yet' and we don't always know why.  But Mommy loves you and Maximus SO much, and I am SO happy with just us!"  It might just be us four, and I have to be okay with it, I can be okay with it... I will be okay with it.  Please Lord help me be content if your answer is no!

I've been looking into adoption as well, not to seriously yet, but a little.  I've looked at international verses domestic. Both are hard and take a lot of time.  I'm open to it, but the process is difficult. We really need to pray about it. And its hard to think about when we still have two beautiful blasts waiting to go home in my uterus.

Last cycle post FET #3 was a fast one, 34 days.  I  had a feeling it would be a good one since I felt really good and healthy. Today I'm CD6 and am my E2 Vivelle dots.  Our tentative transfer date it September 25.

What we are doing different this cycle?  Starting at square one...  Going back to where we conceived our sons.  We are transferring our embryos to the Redondo Beach office, Dr. R (my original dr) will be doing my transfer, I am having Kristine be our embryologist (she was our embryologist with our boys), and we are doing assisted hatching (that will be different.).

I want to say I'm hopeful, but my heart breaks in reality.  I don't want to lose these last two.  I'm praying these will be our take home babies, both of them.  I'll take the bedrest, I'll take the pains, I'll take the C-section, I'll take it all for these two little ones to make it.  I love these two. 

I loved all of them.  Each one has caused me heartbreak each one has caused me to love it, and want it.  I just have to believe, the ones we lost will be waiting for me in Heaven.  That is only what makes sense to my feelings.  They were a life, they were alive, they just didn't make it.

Friday, July 31, 2015

I caved... FET #3

Stark freaken white.

I know my body too well.

9dp5dt... FET#3

As of yesterday, all symptoms, are gone.  No cramps, no sore bbs (well at least no more sore than they were), nothing is noticeable anymore.  I have to admit, I'm feeling completely let down.  I have a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach saying, "this didn't work."

Before yesterday, I had the "I'm 90% sure this DID work," feeling. Why!? Why!? Why is this so dang hard.  Why does this hurt so bad?  It is so true that no matter where you are in your journey, if you have one kid, two kids, or however many, any amount of IF really hurts.  My heart feels broken once again.

I really needed to cry this morning. I did.  I felt better.  For some reason my mind keeps going back to this image...

"The Child Who Was Never Born" by Martin Hudeceka

My heart is heavy. For all of us.

I have not POAS, so I know I don't have a definitive answer, but I am not optimistic.  I'm sorry for being so down and depressed.

The one time I want to be bloated (my one real definitive symptom), my stomach is as flat as a board.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

6dp5dt... FET #3!

Today marks the day I got my BFP for FET #1, and the day I tested last month. This month, I have no desire to test. I have no desire to see a pink line, since there is no guarantee there will be a strong BETA. I also don't want to see another BFN, I would want to quit all my meds again! I was an emotional wreck last month... And the month I saw pink lines. I don't know how some of you do it, each and every cycle. I'm am done with the POAS... For now! I even have two FRER's sitting in my bathroom and I'm not tempted in the least.

When I knew l was going to do PIO shots, I also vowed not to symptom spot, since I knew my symptoms would be different and probably stronger. However, it is so hard not to pay attention to everything. I can feel things that are different, and that gives me hope!

The past weekend end was crazy busy, sorry I didn't update! We spent the day at the beach for my nieces 14th birthday (where does the time go?!). I remember when she was born, I was studying abroad in Florance, Italy. I received the email of her beautiful picture and cried! She was so cute and is really turning into such a wonderful young lady (that makes me sound old, but it's true!).

My "symptoms"

3dp5dt- really sore bb's (PIO), crampy, in a melancholy mood. Just relaxed on the beach watching the wave while my parents played with my boys in the waves. It was so nice. It the morning I was super grumpy with C and the boys, but that went away.

4sp5dt- Randomly decided to take basal body temp ... 98.6!  I was irritable again. Super tired, bb's sore, and crampy. These cramps are really throwing me off. I've never had them so bad! It makes me a little worried, but I've also read positive stories with cramps. I had NO sex drive. We are NOT BDing until heartbeat, but I also need to take care of C... I was super grumpy about it. Not in the mood AT ALL!

5dp5dt- in a much better mood today. I woke up at 5, had to pee and could not fall back asleep, but laid there til 630. Took BBT again... 99.0!! That is the highest it has ever been for me! I retook it four times to be sure. All morning I felt to hot like a hot flash. Gagged while brushing teeth. Super duper crampy in the afternoon, felt like period cramps. Gagged while cleaning off the boys lunch plate of leftover hummus. So odd for me. BB's a little less sore? Not sure. Also INCREASED sex drive. Really wanted the BD, but knew we shouldn't... Poor C!

6dp5dt- woke up having the most vivid sex dream, ever! It was so REAL! I've read about that happening to people, but I never understood it... Until now! Maybe it's because we can't BD?! Took temp... 99.1!!!! What?!?! Retook it 4 times and then took C's to make sure my thermometer was working... His was 97.7! I'm not sick at all. I had some light cramps in the morning, but now I feel fine. My bb's are less sore but still full.  My low back is a little achy this afternoon and I'm still really crampy.  I even thought about taking a tylenol, but I know these are period cramps.

That is it for symptoms! This week has been crazy. My poor dog, Oliver, tore his ACL on Saturday. We think from jumping off our back yard table. Didn't see it. He is having surgery tomorrow morning. Please pray for him. He is my first born, my baby :(

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