Thursday, October 22, 2009

Growing Up

And the suck-fest continues, folks.

We got a phone call on Sunday night (whilst at dinner at G&A's)-my mom was rushed to the ER (ironically, the one where she's a supervisor) after having a stroke. They gave her tPA (a "clot buster") and airlifted her to a hospital in Trenton, where the AWESOMEST neurosurgeon is (like, he's in the top 10 neurosurgeon's IN THE NATION. And he's single and good looking, which doesn't hurt, either). She was doing okay on Monday, then started becoming lethargic and more unresponsive. The ICU nurse immediately rushed her for a CT scan, where they found a huge clot by her brain stem, and they took her into surgery and were able to remove the entire thing, which was no easy thing due to the amounts of tPA and heparin she was on.

So, what caused it? Well, Dr. Hotness thinks that it was a combination of narrowing of the arteries in the head (due to years of smoking) and one of the chemo drugs, cisplatin, which has a risk of inducing strokes. But, she's a fighter (she was already trying to do things for herself when I left last night) and she'll fight this.

She's still in the ICU but is doing much better-her right side is affected, and she really can't talk much due to the muscle weakness. She's more alert and is aware of what's going on (she keeps asking what her blood pressure is....the nurse in her can't take a day off, I suppose), which is a positive. She'll be moved soon to an acute rehab facility where she'll stay to do her therapies.

So, there we are. It was a scary few days, since it was very touch-and-go on Monday. I still can't comprehend that there was a very real chance that she could've died or become completely incapacitated on Monday had the doctors and nurses at the hospital hadn't moved as quickly as they did. The two hours that she was in surgery were probably the scariest time in my life, and watching my father go through this was difficult for me. I'm not ready to lose my mother yet. But, I feel like I'm also not ready for this, either. I've suddenly had to become an "adult" in a few short days, and I'm not liking it either. Unfortunately, I have no choice in the matter.

Adulthood, here I come.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Bitter And Not Really Liking It.

Thank you, all of you out there on the 'Net, for your words of comfort. You get it, and I know that-you don't have to say anything more than "Shit, that sucks. Sorry" and I know that you truly understand. And, a special thanks goes out to Shelli-you're such a wonderful, giving, caring person, and I love you lots. LOTS!

I'm doing okay. I have moments that I'm so fucking angry that I want to scream and throw things (last night I looked at Sean and had the almost irresistable urge to punch him squarely in the face. Obviously I didn't do that, because then I'd be blogging from a prison common area rather than the comfort of my couch), alternating with times of just wanting to either cry, or hide and wait for the world to go away. I just want to wake up and it be nine years earlier, when I was younger, newly married and ignorant to infertility. Maybe if I knew then what I know now, I'd have made different decisions. But, shoulda coulda woulda, right?

Needless to say, it hasn't been fun. I go back to the RE next week to have the WTF conversation, along with a saline sonogram to make sure that everything has passed. We'll just have to wait until then to see what is the next suggestion. I'm thinking that she's going to suggest PGD, but I guess we won't know until Thursday. Unfortunately, since nothing was frozen, we'd have to start from scratch yet again. But, the real question du jour is this: do I want to do another cycle? Right now I can't even contemplate it, but if Dr. Pipsqueak feels strongly about doing another cycle and give me a good enough reason that we should, then maybe. Maybe doing PGD will help-at the least, it will lower the miscarriage rate due to the fact that we'd be transferring embryos that are chromosomally normal (that is, assuming that we'd have enough to transfer-I've learned the hard way that nothing is guaranteed with IVF). I've had every test under the sun to see if there's another underlying problem that's causing both the implantation failure and chemicals, and they've all come back as normal. So, what the fuck is the problem?

To say that Sean and I are both miserable fucks is putting it mildly. This hit us both really hard, especially since it was such a great cycle in the sense that we had great stats with my retrieval/fertilization rates, I didn't over respond, and we had so many blasts. It doesn't help that most people can't really fathom what we're going through, unless they've been through it themselves. And, even then, once they've made it through to the "other side" it's like a distant memory and they can't really relate. I also can't help feeling that every time, EVERY TIME we do this, something fucked up happens and it doesn't work, although it does for someone else. We're pregnancy magnets! Seriously! Unfortunately, the magnet also seems to repel any success for us. I can trace every single one of our friends children, with the exception of one, to a failed IVF or FET cycle, or a miscarriage. That's a lot of babies, people. And, yeah, perhaps it's negative thinking on my part (as was recently suggested to me), but it's also the truth. I'm the only one of my friends (excepting one couple who decided to be childfree) who doesn't have children. Hell, I'm the only one left from my original Fertility Friend group, from my bloglist. I'm the Last Woman Standing, and not by choice. I didn't do it to myself-no amount of negative or positive thinking, acupuncture, herbs, eating right, eliminating caffeine, meditation, tarot readings, praying to Saints, Guardian Angels, God/Allah/Buddha/The Flying Spaghetti Monster
has made this work for us. Oh, I guess statistically, it DID work, twice-it just didn't stick around long enough to grow into a baby who would later ask mommy to buy eyeliner and ask for the car keys. And I do realize that it's farther than some people have gotten in their reproductive treatment. But, dammit, I want it to be MY turn. Not my brother's, not my friend's or even the woman who's been sitting next to me for two weeks in the clinic waiting room. Yes, it's selfish and immature, but I think that I'm allowed to be bitter and angry and selfish and immature-sounding about it. I've been doing this long enough to be entitled to my feelings.

My feelings are really the only tangible thing that I have right now.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009


Yeah,'s not a good ending.

Beta 9.9 I have to stop progesterone, be back on Friday for more bloodwork to make sure that the beta is going down, and make a follow-up with the doctor.

I also get to do the Rhogam therapy tomorrow at the hospital, due to being Rh negative. Yay....another sick day taken due to this. Wonderfuckingful.

Oh, did I mention it's also my anniversary? Yeah. Happy Anniversary Sean. Too bad my gift to you is another dead baby. Who knew we'd be having THIS MUCH FUN nine years later.

What. The. Fuck.

Monday, October 05, 2009

11dp5dt-Beta Hell

Today's beta shows that my levels did go up, however, not as much as they hoped. The nurse said it was "20" (as to the exact number I don't know...guess I'll have to find that out tomorrow). So....from 15.6 to 20 pretty much sucks big monkey ass, right? The nurse who called me said that Dr. Pipsqueak still wants me to continue on the meds for two more days, then come in for Beta #3. When I asked her how realistic this pregnancy could be, she replied that "it doesn't look too good", but then again, sometimes things actually work out (which is why they're keeping me on the meds, I suppose). On one hand, it's good news that it DID go up, but not so good that it didn't double like they wanted. As to whether or not it will be considered viable....well, it's anyone's guess at this point. I've been trying to research on the 'Ol Interweb to see if there are any cases of women with low betas/doubling times that have gone on to have successful pregnancies, and there are women out there, so I guess there's always hope for me. The odds are against me, but there's always a chance, right?

It's odd-I didn't get really upset when I got the phone call (probably because I was in the middle of a faculty meeting), and I'm not totally gutted right now. Maybe I'm still in a state of shock over the whole fucking thing, but I just have a peaceful feeling about this (at least, at this point in time). Sure I want this to work, but it's not up to me, ultimately. That embryo just needs to either make it, or it won't. I've been through this before, and yes, it sucks royally. But at least I know what to expect, unlike the last time. Last night, as I was lying in bed, I had a little talk with the Man Upstairs (as well as St. Anthony, St. Gerard, St. Rita, St. Theresa and the ever-appropriate St. Jude....patron saint of lost causes) and just asked for a sign that this will all work out for the best. Needless to say I went to bed without a definitive answer.

On the way home today I was driving up the Parkway when I looked up at the sky. It was a partly-cloudy day, where the clouds are all puffy and look like cotton balls. I was thinking about the game I used to play when I was a little kid, where you would look at the clouds and see what objects you could "see" in the clouds, when I looked at the cloud formation that was directly in front of me. It was in the shape of an early fetus, lying on it's back. You know what I mean-that picture you see when it's around 6-10 weeks old. Yeah.

My question is: is it wishful thinking, or is it that sign that I asked for? The jury is still out on that one.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

9dp5dt-Beta Day

I did two more Evil Pee Sticks of Anxiety this morning, and the faint positives are still there, probably a little bit darker than yesterday.

Beta came back at 15.9, Progesterone at 27. I stay on meds for another two days, then go back on Monday for a repeat to see if the numbers have doubled.

I'm trying to stay positive and focused, because Nurse Blondie said that it isn't necessarily a bad number (lower than they'd like to see, but still better than a single-digit). I personally don't give a fiddler's fart-as long as it consistently doubles, that's enough for me. It's going to be difficult, since I've been here once before, and you all know how THAT ended up.

So, all of you out there in InternetLand, please pray to God/Buddha/Allah/The Flying Spaghetti Monster/Whoever that this works. I can't go through the awfulness a second time.

Friday, October 02, 2009

8dp5dt-The Night Before The Morning Of

Thanks for your support guys. It's sort of blown over, I think. I still haven't talked to my brother, and I won't until we know about the results of tomorrow's beta (then, depending on the results....well, we'll see). I did talk to my dad for his birthday the other day, and it wasn't mentioned by either of us, and I haven't talked to my mother yet, although her treatment is next week. *Sigh*. Hopefully they'll have learned their lesson about thinking before speaking, but I doubt it. It's just best to distance myself for now.

As for the 2ww front: well, nothing yet. I've been having cramps in varying degress all week long, and the girls have been killing me. I mean killing me and then once I'm dead KILLING ME AGAIN. Oddly enough, they hurt more at night than in the morning. The other night they were literally throbbing from the outside and in towards my center. Ugh. It's like taking off my bra and feeling like a bag of rocks dropped out. I'm tired, hungry, constantly peeing, sore and starting to get lumpy from the PIO. What else is new, right? That's why PIO sucks-it gives you the pregnancy mind fuck.

As for testing...........sorry Heather, but I did cave. I can't help it-I'm of the mindset that I need to be prepared, so that if it's negative it's not a total kick in the ass. I started on 6dp5dt, which was BFN. Then again the next day, which was "sort-of" negative (kinda ambiguous, so I'm going to say BFN). Today, I did three more, one in the morning (the CBE +/- kind), and two this afternoon when I got home (a FRER and a CVS brand, which is supposed to be like a FRER). The CBE had a really really faint "+" line (like you had to really look at it), but the FRER had a more defined line (but still very faint, though). The CVS one also had a really faint line, but not as strong as the FRER. The upshot of all this? I'm not sure. It's definitely not an evap line, because the faint 2nd line came up within the 5 minute window. If it IS positive then the beta could come up as really low, which isn't a good sign (and I've been there before). If it's negative, then it's just a fucking bad karmic joke. However, three different test coming up as (sort of) false positive? I'm not sure that could be happening-it's too weird. Either way, there are two tests left (a FRER and a CVS) so I'll test tomorrow before I leave for the beta and let Sean look at it (he doesn't know-I'm a closet POAS'er!! HELP!) to get a second opinion.

So friends, hold your applause, because we're at that "maybe.......not sure" stage of the 2ww. We'll all know tomorrow, one way or the other. I know which way I want it to go, though.