Monday, August 25, 2008

Baby Incubator....

Hello blog world! Well it is official.... dh and I will be welcoming a baby or babies by May of 2009!!!! Our first IVF attempt had worked and I feel great being able to say it!!! I'M PREGNANT!!! 

I had my first pregnancy test Friday, I tested at home using a home pregnancy test (HPT) Friday morning even though I was not supposed too. But i had to make sure it would be positive...i had to emotionally prepare myself for any outcome. So when I checked the HPT and saw the 2nd line confirming a positive..... i was so happy and breathed a sigh of relief! The 2nd line was a little faint, but it was obvious and could be seen clearly even if it was a little light.  HPT  detects the hcg level. Now i was still a bit nervous to hear what the HcG level would be. The hcg level is the pregnancy hormone that is tested for, and I have never gotten a good assuring 1st hcg level.  So when Dr. called that afternoon with good news.... i knew it had to be higher than I have ever gotten before. And it was! It came in at highest ever has been a 21.  Now I had to wait until Monday (today) to retest to make sure the hcg levels were increasing as they should. Hcg level is supposed to double every 24-48 hours or so. How they double give the Dr. a good idea if there should be concerned with the viability of the pregnancy.  Now, one must keep in mind that even some of the slowest doubling times for hcg levels have resulted in normal healthy pregnancies!

So I spent the weekend happy and in somewhat of a daze that my pregnancy test was as high as it was! It was reassuring, despite experiencing some cramping over the weekend, that I was feeling more and more nausea and feeling some other unpleasant pregnancy related symptoms! So I got up this morning looking forward to my blood test to see where my hcg level was now. I tested again at home using a HPT first thing this morning, and I was sooooo happy to see the 2nd line be darker than it was on Friday. It was now as dark as it the test line!!!! While some may argue that it doesn't matter how dark or light it may be, a line is a line and if it's positive that is all that matters! But let me tell you, for me it was such a big deal.  My hcg levels have a history of not going up as they need too, so I saw today HPT as a sign that it was! And I was right!!! Today's hcg level was 378!!! So I am definitely breathing a huge sigh of relief and living in the moment and not thinking of all the things that can still go wrong!!!!

Unfortunately, I don't have the luxury of enjoying the bliss of ignorance, having struggled for soo many years trying to conceive, I know of many things that can go wrong.... but I refuse to cheat myself from enjoying and relishing in the fact that I'm PREGNANT!!! I'm a baby or babies' Incubator!!!! I will know if both embryos we transfered are sticking around or if only one of them decided to take up residence in my uterus on September 8th... 2 LONG WEEKS away!! LOL But I will enjoy being pregnant!!!!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Results are in!!!

Got a call from my RE's office this morning giving me fertilization report... and here is what is going on with the Eggis retrieved yesterday morning:

24 total eggs were retrieved
23 of 24 were viable, meaning mature
21 of the 23 Fertilized!!!

This means we have 21 embryos! 21 Babies growing!! Dr. said that this is beyond what they ever expect from anyone so this is an excellent report. With this many growing embryos, we will no doubt make it to a day 5 transfer. Transfer would be on Wednesday, 8/13! I'm excited. I will get an update on Monday, and transfer will be scheduled then!

Will keep you posted on what is reported on Monday, but a very good chance all will be well and will transfer two great, healthy Blastocysts!!!

Hunting for Eggs in August....

Egg Retrieval (ER) was yesterday, on the lucky 8th day of the 8th month of year in 2008... 8/8/08! The Chinese culture believes that the number 8 is very lucky, so lucky that they planned the Olympics opening ceremony to be on this date, and to start at 8:08 pm local time! I have always thought of 8 as my lucky number myself no real reason just that it was my birthday. So 8/8/08 was the day for my ER. I wasn't sure of how many eggs to expect them to retrieve, since i had about 16 that were mature and a few close to it with another few that were a lot smaller. I walked into the OR at my RE's clinic a little nervous, and a little excited as I couldn't believe the day had finally arrived!
I was the first ER of the day, and I had to be there at 6:45 am and we were on time! Nurse immediately prepped me for surgery. It was a very surreal feeling for me. I still could not believe that this day had arrived. I had been so patiently waiting for over a year to do this, and it was here. I was so nervous in the days leading up to ER. So many things went through my head. Part of it was hope and belief that this IVF cycle was going to work and also had fear that it would not! Some days i did fear having hope and belief, but as I await transfer of 2 beautiful embryos, I am less afraid to be hopeful and really believe our time has arrived!
I dressed in the gown they provided which was really nice. It wasn't your typical hospital gown that one has trouble keeping it close from behind, i can't describe the texture but it was nice. It was lined with some sort of insulation that once i was dressed in the pretty purple gown, a tube was inserted in one of the openings and the insulation quickly filled with warm air. I put on some really cute white socks with cute purple bear paws on the bottom to give me some traction... not the ordinary plain slipper socks i've gotten from other hospitals. The nurse took all the vitals, and blood pressure was a bit high, which is usual for me before anytime of's my nerves that get the better of me. She struggled to get a good vein in my arm for the I-V i had a case of a 'runaway vein' which is not like me because I have great veins. But i hadn't had any fluids since dinner the night before so that was forgiven! LOL Once she found a vein that didn't run away, I was ready for the OR.
It was a bit eery walking into the OR seeing the table where I would be laying on, and all the medical equipment. I was nervous and the nurses could tell. We joked a little bit to help ease my nerves. I layed flat on the table, arms spread out and an oxygen mask placed over my nose and mouth. The last thing i remember after the anesthesiologist told me I would be feeling a bit woozy soon, was the nurse lifting my legs and placing them into the stirrups....then the next thing i know, i'm waking up in recovery with 2 neighbors awaiting the same procedure. I never saw them as our curtains were closed, but i could hear them. When i left for ER, no one had arrived, i was the only patient. I woke up rather quickly from anesthesia which was nice. I felt the semi-painful cramping in my lower abdomen area, confirming to me that the procedure had indeed taken place. Nurse checked in and asked if i wanted my hubby to come back and sit with me. I remember shaking my head yes, as I still had the oxygen mask on.
He came in and sat beside my bed and asked how i felt. The nurse walked in with some gatorade and tylenol to help with the cramping pain. I never realized she removed the oxygen mask and that i didn't have it on until about 10 minutes later. Nurse told me 33 eggs were retrieved and thought that was a whole of eggs! I was surprised i didn't feel more uncomfortable in the days leading up to ER. She went over a few more instructions and then my RE walked in and she said all went and looked great. She retrieved 25 eggs. I wasn't sure of the exact number then as i got 2 different numbers. But it didn't matter as i knew i would get an exact number the following morning. I got dressed, used the restroom, and walked out my RE's clinic at 8:45 am, exactly 2 hours after arriving! I had a good day, not too much pain and drinking lots of gatorade. Shhhh don't ever tell my mother, or my Re for that matter, but i felt fine after ER that hubby and I went to eat breakfast! I've been under anesthesia enough times to know how my body reacts to it. I do well fortunately and don't suffer an nausea and can eat just about anything i want, in moderation of course!
Now that this part of the process is done and over with, I patiently await transfer day! We are all hoping for a day 5 transfer...and with that many eggies, i don't see why that won't happen!! Stay tuned for the fertilization report!

Friday, August 1, 2008


TGIF???? Usually I enjoy Fridays because it is Friday.. the end of a work week and you have 2 days to enjoy and do as you please! Today has been an unusual "bad" Friday!!! It sucks big time when your past comes back to bite you in the ass!!! I found out that I can not apply for a new health insurance coverage until probably 2011!! Why 2011, because in February 2011 will mark 5 years of being Cancer Free.  Most insurance companies are not willing to take you on as  a risk unless it has been at least 5 years since your diagnosis and treatment.

If you pay for your medical insurance, you know that health care is extremely expensive! We have had to pay for our own medical health coverage since 2004.  We have been satisfied with our care, but not too happy with the ever increasing premiums year after year. Well this year, my husband's company offered health plans at discounted premium rates. So my husband and i decided that we needed to find a more affordable plan.  So we found one and applied. In the meantime, my husband canceled our existing coverage before finding out if we would be approved.  Well, HE was approved and I wasn't!

What is frustrating is being reminded again that I had to deal with Cancer in the first place. Wasn't it enough that I had to face the possibility of giving up my dream of having my own children, that I almost lost my entire uterus and would have be pushed into menopause before i was even 30??? Why can't the fact that I faced cancer, stared at it the face and beat in with in 6 months of diagnosis be awarded?? I mean I understand why they wouldn't want to take the risk, but it doesn't make me feel any better.  I had to just laugh at the irony of being denied also for the medication I'm on for the "pre-existing" condition. I'm on Metformin to help with PCOS, the culprit for me getting cancer in the first place, therefore continue to stay on it to help prevent.

I've explored options, the state of California does have a program to help insure those who are denied covered due to pre-existing conditions.  That is great, I can get coverage through the major Health Insurance companies in the state, the only catch is that there is a waiting list, that could be a 4 month wait.  It is funded by the state and well if you live in California, then you know we don't have enough to fund programs like this one.  

We have 30 days from termination date to get re-instated with our previous health plan, which was July 1st.... July had 31 days. Hmmmmm wonder if they will take us back??? I can re-apply for individual coverage, but could also be denied because of the 'pre-existing' condition. Never mind the fact that i was under the same exact insurance company when diagnosed and successfully treated for cancer!! Hope the weekend goes better.....