Wednesday, October 31, 2007

When it comes to God...

... I have no clear belief system. I don;t believe in any God that is represented by any major religion. I think when you die, thats it. And yet, I have moments where I wonder. I found this on the net today, and it rang true to me. The same theory can apply to Karma as to God. The part in bold is something I have always said, and certainly it applies where our son is concerned.

What do I think God meant when he gave me infertility?

"Couples experiencing infertility often receive well-meaning but extremely insensitive "advice." We can all list the most popular ones: "Just relax and you'll get pregnant," or "Adopt and you'll get pregnant." Of the most painful from those who think they've got the goods on God's plan, "Maybe God never meant for you to have children." The sheer audacity of making a statement like that never fails to amaze me.

"These same people would never walk up to someone seeking treatment for cancer and say, "Maybe God never meant for you to live." However, because I am infertile, I'm supposed to get on with my life. It's hard to understand that people can not see infertility for what it is, a disease for which I have to seek treatment. What if Jonas Salk had said to the parents of polio victims, "Maybe God meant for thousands of our children to be cripples, live in an iron lung or die." What if he'd never tried to find a cure? Who could think for one minute that that was God's plan?

What do I think God meant when he gave me infertility? I think he meant for my husband and me to grow closer, become stronger, love deeper. I think God meant for us to find the fortitude within ourselves to get up every time infertility knocks us down. I think God meant for our medical community to discover medicines, invent medical equipment, create procedures and protocols. I think God meant for us to find a cure for infertility.

No, God never meant for me not to have children. That's not my destiny; that's just a fork in the road I'm on. I've been placed on the road less traveled, and, like it or not, I'm a better person for it. Clearly, God meant for me to develop more compassion, deeper courage, and greater inner strength on this journey to resolution, and I haven't let Him down.

Frankly, if the truth be known, I think God has singled me out for a special treatment. I think God meant for me to build a thirst for a child so strong and so deep that when that baby is finally placed in my arms, it will be the longest, coolest, most refreshing drink I've ever known.

While I would never choose infertility, I can not deny that a fertile woman could never know the joy that awaits me. Yes, one way or another, I will have a baby of my own. And the next time someone wants to offer me unsolicited advice I'll say, "Don't tell me what God meant when He handed me infertility. I already know."

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Come off it!

STILL bleeding. 11 days and counting. Not amused.

Monday, October 29, 2007


Still waiting. Still sniffing. The double dose is giving me awful headaches. Its a known side effect of synarel, and the single dose was not too bad, but definitely notice it now. Sharp, horrid ones.

On the plus side, my period is STILL lingering, which now has my hopes up that Thursdays scan will give me the go ahead. Who knows though, I clearly don't!!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

No deal.

It was every bit as mortifying as I thought. Actually, it was much worse. Horrible.

Lining too thick still. Double sniffing dugs and come back in a week. If no go, more pills to get ANOTHER period and come back in another 2 weeks.

So 1-3 weeks delay. Pissed off. Could have been with my boy on a fun day out but no, I had to do this. The Dr, the nurse and the pharmacist were all very nice, couldn't fault the service at all. Lots of waiting (over an hour all up); but oh well. Its hard to do this. Hard to drive all the way in, wait... no outcome.. do it all again next week. Its hard.

Shitful. Oh well. Not much I can do or say really is there?!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Ow ow ow ow ow!

I so shouldn't have raved on about my period. Its gotten gradually worse the last 24 hours and is now very painful and rather heavy. Doubt it will be light, let alone gone, by Thursday. How degrading. Oh well. Am sure I am not the first. Hopefully I will be ready for FSH. PLEEEEEAAASSEEEE.

Monday, October 22, 2007

I chose my Doctor well

I really, really, really do like my FS. She answered my email promptly as always, and said we can discuss the dose at the scan, and that she is happy to adjust it upwards. The relief is enormous! This is very, very, good news.

My period is still AWOL, no idea what is going on there. Just have to see what happens at the scan. The problem may be that if I don't get a decent period my lining may not be thin enough to start injections. Nothing I can do about it. It is really hard - and completely against my nature - to go with the flow and relax about whats going on. I am doing better at the moment, but its taking a concerted effort.

Anyway, Thursday will be telling. Nervous as hell.

Feel very stressed and tense today. Sort of feel alone too, even though I know there are people who care and will listen. I just feel weird. :(

Sunday, October 21, 2007

The worry

Freaking out again. Waiting for this period that won't start. Spotting and thats it. Come on!!! Sigh. Am worried that I will still be bleeding at the scan Thursday. Way to be even less dignified and more embarrassed :(

And then I was stupidly reading stuff on the net about starting doses of puregon and bad results from low stim doses and I know my Dr plans to start me very low in case the PCOS sends me into hyperstim (medically v dangerous). But I responded slow in the IUIs and now am freaking out. Sigh. Its so scary. The chance of this actually working is so bloody low. I'm depressed. :(

Thursday, October 18, 2007


Today is a wonderful day! It is the "take last pill today" day! Kaloo kalay! Have I ever been so excited at the prospect of a period? I don't think so! Cannot wait to get off these horrid things. So from now on its just sniffing synarel for a week, scan next Thursday (changed to 10:45am).

Speaking of which, yesterday I paid the difference between a Stim cycle and an ICSI cycle and then called the nurses to sort out picking up the injection because the information book says to organise it in advance to avoid delay. Honestly, so far they're badly lacking in the impressive stakes. We had this conversation:

Me: When do I pick up the meds etc because I have my down reg scan next week.

Nurse: You'll have a script.

Me: I don't have a script, should I have?

Nurse (in a voice that clearly shows she thinks I am lacking brain cells): No you get it from your doctor at your scan.

Me: Oh ok. And erm.. then what do I do with that? Do I take it to a chemist?

Nurse (now sounding like I am from another planet for not knowing the drill): No, you bring it in to us, and we do it all here.

Me: oh ok. And so do I need an appointment for that or?

Nurse (almost shitty now): No, its just routine, you come here after your scan.

Me: Well no one told me that.

Nurse (now feeling chastised and even more pissed as a result): Right, well thats how it works.

Fond farewells etc. (pfft).

So really, not too impressed with them so far to be honest! They've a lot of ground to make up and so far none has been made up at all. Oh well. Long as they get it right on the day...

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Feel insane.

Hormones are doing my fucking head in.

I just had a MASSIVE tantrum because I couldn't peel my boiled eggs and when I did they weren't cooked through. So I threw them (a handful of egg) into the sink but half went on the window/windowsill/sink. shell everywhere. On the floor... So, I sat on the floor and cried. Finn was patiently eating his lunch and watching nonchalantly. He eventually said "I'll look after you mum" - bless him.

So then I tried to poach an egg but it didn't work, again, so I threw it all in the garden (which Angus the lab loved!), threw the saucepan in the sink and had ham instead :(

It SOUNDS funny, but it really is an awful feeling almost out of control.

Interesting article.


Twin Babies from IVF Falling.

The number of twins born to IVF mums is plummeting as more women opt to have just a single embryo implanted to fall pregnant, official fertility figures show.

A trans-Tasman report into assisted reproductive technology (ART) shows that fertility specialists are encouraging women to avoid a double embryo transfer.

Implanting two embryos slightly increases the chance of pregnancy but is more likely to result in twins, which are more likely to be born underweight and premature and with a higher risk of birth defects than singleton babies.

New statistics released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) show that almost half - 48 per cent - of all ART treatment cycles in Australia and New Zealand are now single-embryo transfers, compared with 28 per cent in 2002.

As a result, the number of twins born has dropped from more than 40 per cent of ART births in 2002 to 23 per cent in 2005.

Fertility expert and AIHW adviser Professor Michael Chapman said these figures could be expected to shrink to just 10 per cent in the next five years as more fertility experts and parents opted for single embryo procedures.

"The end result of this is bigger babies, healthier babies, so it is great to see these numbers dropping so fast," Prof Chapman said.

"I think specialists who are advising parents have been won over to the notion that twins are a bad thing."

Since 2002, the Fertility Society of Australia has recommended that women under 35 have only one embryo implanted. But the single embryo option remains less popular among older women, who are most keen to have a first-time pregnancy success.

The AIHW report, called Assisted Reproduction Technology in Australia and New Zealand 2005, counted 51,017 treatment cycles in Australia and New Zealand in 2005, including 3,356 donor sperm insemination cycles.

The number of ART babies born in the two countries soared from 6,792 in 2004 to 9,764 in 2005, with such births now accounting for almost three per cent of Australia's annual birthrate.

The average age of IVF mums was 35.5 years, slightly higher than the previous year. The proportion over 40 also increased fractionally to 15.3 per cent.

The death rate among IVF babies dropped by a quarter between 2004 and 2005, largely due to the increase in safer single embryo transfers and singleton births.

Only eight per cent of babies born from a single embryo procedure had a low birth weight, compared with 25 per cent of babies born after two embryos were implanted.

The results are in line with a study presented at the national fertility conference in Hobart last month showing IVF twins were a vastly bigger cost to the health system.

A twin delivery cost $24,000, due to clinical complications and post-birth care, compared with $8,000 for a solo IVF baby.

This is interesting as we have been told we will only transfer one, and I was a bit flat about it reducing our chances (or in the very least, meaning we may need more cycles before success). Good to know we aren't alone in the single transfer stakes.

Monday, October 15, 2007


We got Josh's sperm analysis results back today, expecting no dramas and instead were told motility improved, but morphology low (so not many sperm the right shape). Our Fertility Specialist (FS) has recommended we use ICSI in our cycle. This is IntraCytoplasmic Sperm Injection and is demonstrated in the below video. To watch the video (if you've not used youtube before, am looking at you Mum); press play, then pause again, and wait til the red line is filled then hit play again. This will stop it from stop starting as it loads.

In the needle you can just see a little black sperm swimming up and down the length of the needle. Stupid thing swims the wrong way after they pierce into the egg, but eventually swims out and the needle is removed.

This is good in some ways, it means fertilisation is likely, since they will be forced together, rather than waiting for them to decide if they can be arsed doing it themselves or not. It costs a little more, $377 more upfront, but only $75 more overall after medicare rebate. The ICSI procedure has only very, very recently been added to the medicare schedule for rebate so thats great for us.

Its good to know now, and be prepared and have this in place to deal with it - but it has wobbled me a little.. like something else to overcome... Just a bit depressing.

Anyhoo, heres the video:

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Are you good at hurdle races? I hope I am.

Feel odd today. Up and down. I am excited, about the prospect of becoming pregnant. I feel confident that this will work for us - in time. Assuming we can remain strong enough to give it a decent try (e.g. 12 months).

Feel absolutely sick with nerves at the scariness ahead though. IVF is basically a series of hurdles you have to get over. Obviously the scheduling was one, though I didn't realise that until it went wrong. From now on, I see the hurdles as thus:

1. Scan on the 25th, needs to show no cysts and thin lining, need to be ready to inject.

IF I am indeed ready to inject the next hurdle is a big one, and one I have real potential at failing.

2. Scan to assess fsh injection affect, i.e. follicle growth. I suspect mine will be slow, and will need longer than the usual one week only. I hope that I do have SOME growth though.

This leads to the next hurdle:

3. Do I have enough follicles EVENTUALLY? Even if slow, will I have a decent number. If not, I could be cancelled and this would be extremely distressing. Any of these hurdles causing us to stumble will be devastating. To not even get the chance... ugh. So, responding effectively.

Assuming I do relatively okay, the next hurdle is OPU.

4. How many eggs are retrieved? We want a decent number. 10 would be brilliant! We only need one to put back, but we want a few to choose the best from, and some may not progress and I would love to have some frozen to avoid another long cycle if this one fails. So number of eggs.

Assuming we pass that hurdle and get a few eggs at least; we then need to:

5. Fertilisation. Need to get them to fertilise, hope that they don;t sit and refuse to socialise with the sperm. Hope like hell they fertilise. Often, many do not. Again, we'd like one beauty to transfer, and a few for the freezer and expect some not to make it any further as well.

After fertilisation, we want:

6. The embryos to continue developing. So cell division, not just not growth... Again, I expect we could lose some here. And it depends what stage of development they reach. The more they grow, the better their chance of sticking. Would love some top grade, beautiful embies. Please.

Assuming this goes ok, we then transfer one and freeze (hopefully) lots more. The final hurdle is the biggest.

7. Implantation. We need any transferred embryo to burrow in and implant into the uterine lining, thereby making us pregnant, as shown by a blood test 2 weeks after transfer.

There are so many chances for failing. It literally makes me feel sick to think about. It will be good to complete one cycle, negative or positive, to tell us whether there are any other issues we didn;t yet know about at the egg quality or fertilisation stage. If not, then we can expect to get there eventually.

I feel exhausted just thinking about it!!! The biggest thing I think, is to get lots of good eggs. If this happens, it makes failing at the latter stages a LITTLE less likely (assuming we've on issues with fertilisation).

So scared.

Friday, October 12, 2007

I was wrong, again!

The instructions say take last pill on 18th, not stop on 18th. So thats clear!

Sniffy sniffy

And we're off... Sniffing last night and this morning commenced! Ahh the familiar taste of synarel returns... I had forgotten just how charming it ain't! Bleauch! So anyhoo, sniffing that for a week as well as taking the pill, overlap the two for a week, stop the pill on the 18th (does this mean I take the pill on the 18th or not? If I am to stop on the 18th, I think not?) and then have a period and then a scan on the 25th October to see if we are set to start injections.

In the mail today, I got the initial instructions (pre cancellation); which had my dates as start synarel 31st, stop pill 3rd, scan 14th november. My God. Thank GOD I can start now, that is crazy scheduling. I took great joy from shredding that set of instructions and may frame the new ones when they arrive.

I was worried by my reaction yesterday, gave myself a bit of a fright. Thought I was all calm and impressed I had remained patient for those 3 weeks which old Kel would never have done. Then I fell apart at the first hurdle and that worried me. Will I cope with more setbacks (and generally in an AC cycle there are many IME). I don't know how to prepare myself for the unexpected and roll with it all. It is difficult because its so emotionally charged.

Just try my best eh?

Thursday, October 11, 2007

This is why they call IVF

a rollercoaster. They called again. Have had a cancellation and I can start today...

*swear words!*

They "forgot" to schedule me when i called TWICE 3 frigging weeks ago to say I was on the pill. So now I can't start for another 3 frigging weeks. I told them it wasn't good enough, but they said theres nothing they can do, its the soonest they can fit me in.

So I am dealing with incompetent tools. I gave up my holiday, my life.. for this. I don't think I want to do this. I don't think i CAN do this. this is f$*%ed up.

Oh the characters!

Man, the people we met yesterday at MIVF were such characters. 2 in particular - such odd people!

Poor J had an appointment for his SA yesterday morning so he had to go and do that, and then meet me in the afternoon for the other stuff. Firstly, we met the nurse. She was very nice, showed us the injections which haven't changed since we did IUI - although their trigger is all in one, ready to go; no vial mixing! Woot! I told her I had been on the pill for 3 weeks and was ready to move on so she gave me the script for synarel and said to pick it up then and there, and that she would call me later with my schedule. It was very straight forward, an envelope of info to read and back to the waiting room we went.

We were then called into accounts. We walked in and sat down and the lady said to me"what perfume are you wearing?" I thought to myself oh i must smell nice, how complimentary! I told her and she said "Oh yes, I thought so. I am deathly allergic. I am going to have to get someone else to do this." She called someone else to take over and said she would start, but every 5 seconds she would complain and say she was going to be ill all over me, or "it huts me right here" gently touching a hand to her head. Melodramatic indeed. Was weird. I wasn't sure what to make of it and began to wonder if there were hidden cameras. She started going through the fees and then abruptly stopped and said "no I have to go. I don't want to be throwing up all the way home. is my eye getting smaller?" I was like... err... not really... and Josh pipes up and says "oh yeah it is..." encouraging her neuroses and having fun with it. he is so evil. "I thought so. yes I can feel it" she says and bolts from the room apologising as she goes. I looked at J like.. wtf??? I felt awful!! I am knocking people down with my scent!!!

Anyway, the replacement lady came in and was lovely, talked us through all the fees and so on. Nothing unexpected there except that going public may not be possible. They would try and fit us in, but there is a chance we will end up at Freemasons thereby costing us another 500 bucks. See how we go I guess. We paid then although it wasn't necessary for another couple of weeks, I just wanted it done with so I am committed and don't need to worry about it. Left that with another pile of reading.

Back to the waiting room for another read of Dog Magazine (!) and Vogue Living. Then we got called into the counsellors office. There is no polite way to say this. When we walked in the room STANK. She had obviously just.. well... been struck by flatulence. It was dreadful. I almost gagged and was wondering how the hell I'd be able to sit there for any length of time, all the while hoping it was her and not my husband!!!! Thankfully, it dissipated eventually. teehee! She went through all the background of our ttc and had we told people we were doing IVF and then all the ethical questions. Namely, in the event of immature eggs or ones that are dodgy and won't fertilise, would we donate them to science (not just research, things like teaching new scientists the methods etc) or dispose of them? Then in the event of one of us dying, did we consent to leave any embryos to our partner to use (fine if J dies and I whack them in, but if I die, he needs a new woman to put them in and wouldn't they want their own if he has a new woman? minefield...) And finally, if we are successful and still have embryos in storage, after 5-10 years we need to decide what to do with them; do we dispose, donate to couples, or donate to research. This one we didn't have to decide immediately, we've much time to do that.

She left to photocopy the consent form and J immediately bursts out to me "Did this place STINK when we came in or what?!?!" Boys! We had a giggle and had to recompose before she came back... A further stack of reading and we were done. We were impressed with the staff though, they were friendly and prompt and extremely knowledgeable. i think we both feel in good hands which is important.

After that we picked up the synarel (cha ching.. another $100 bucks!) And came home. Very uneventful. The nurse didn't call either, so I have just left a message this morning and should hear back before 5pm tonight hopefully. Again, I am not desperate to know or particularly antsy. I would like to know so I have the next point to focus on, but otherwise, I am cruisy. For now...

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

The sun will come out tomorrow...

I hope its good news. I spose it will all happen eventually, whether its tomorrow or later. Very indifferent, I guess because I focus on one next step at a time and its not overly exciting yet. Will be good to move on of course, but I wouldn't say I am excited.

Mind you, getting the hell off the pill will be good. I am so so sick of being teary or snappy etc.. Its like clomid again! I don't have good hormones! Am all over the place today. I should find something more productive to do.

Monday, October 1, 2007


Still 9 more sleeps til anything at all happens with this process. Bored. Sick of waiting. Just plodding along... I decided though, that the reason I was all flat and depressed etc is because I dont think the first cycle will work, so am expecting a big, intrusive, yuck process, for no outcome, at least initially. I think long term positive, but not first cycle positive - i.e. realistically. But I just want to get going to get the dud cycles over you know?

Rang the clinic to check I really am meant to just sit tight, and yes, thats right. I did say when I come next week can I move on to the next thing that day or soon after and they said that should be ok. Bloody hope so. Intend to pay and take all the meds with me to save a trip also, which nurse said was a good idea.

Bored with waiting. Its my wedding anniversary next weekend, and my 30th birthday in about 6 weeks and we'll not be able to do anything for either. All our spare cash is going into this IVF caper. Little bit sad, but we'll just do it late.

A week from today is my woulda shoulda coulda day. Had things been different, next Monday I'd have been flying out to my heartland. Also a someday thing now. I sound resentful, but I am not. It was the right decision!