Are we parents yet?

The Clements’ IVF Journey

Shootin’ up! November 27, 2008

Filed under: The process — Aria @ 8:24 pm

First night of stims. The Menopur burned!! That wasn’t expected. From now on, I’ll have Cody do that one last. The Follistim was the one I expected to have the most trouble with because it’s the highest dose of all that I’m on and also because the nurse instructor said that the pen can give some resistance. But that one wasn’t as bad. It’s the damned Menopur that is the worst. If all goes as planned, it’ll only be another eight or nine days of this stuff.

I am having side effects from the Lupron, constant headaches, generalized pain, dizziness, and a lot of nausea and vomiting (and I worked so hard on getting over that before). The joint pain I’m going to attribute more to my arthritis (had it since I was 14) and the weather changing. Since these are also side effects of Menopur and Follistim, I’m in for a fun ride, eh?

I’m scared to death of hyperstimulation. Since I’m easily freaked by the most minor medical thing (which you might think I shouldn’t be with my medical past, but that’s precisely why I’m so easily scared), I’ll probably ask to be checked daily. This office is one that’s really good about about also taking care of the mental health of its patients since anything related to fertility is very, very difficult, and they fully understand that.

So now it’s a countdown to an unknown-for-certain date. Here’s hoping it goes well!


Relief November 25, 2008

Filed under: Medical appointments and stuff — Aria @ 3:20 pm

Got the call, we’re good to keep going for now. We’ll see where things stand at the next appointment next week.


I feel sick

Filed under: Frustrations,Medical appointments and stuff — Aria @ 11:56 am

A few weeks back here was a cyst found, not a big deal because it’s 22mm, which isn’t super huge, but not posting a problem.  Last week it was down to 18mm.  Yay!  Today it’s back to 20 and I was sent for some blood work, estradiol.  It’s a stat order, so we should hear back by the end of the day.  I’m sick to my stomach because what this could mean is we can’t go forward with IVF.  I’ve been crying my eyes out for a while.  All the secret-ill-wishers can start tentatively rejoicing now.  All others, please send positive thoughts that the estradiol levels are low enough that we can continue.  I swear I will die of heartbreak.  I couldn’t handle it if we had to stop now.


The cruelty of some people online November 19, 2008

Filed under: Frustrations — Aria @ 2:23 pm

What kind of comments are common from the internet about IVF? All of these are in reference to me, from this morning alone, and are only the ones short enough to re-post.

“I can’t wait until she does IVF and it doesn’t work.”

Can you get much more evil?

“If she can’t afford IVF [out of pocket], she can’t afford children. lol”

“One thing I’ll never, ever understand: How does she expect to raise children if she can’t afford her fucking fertility treatments? Raising a child costs a LOT more money than fertility treatments do.”

Yeah, except that the cost of raising a child is spread out over decades whereas the tens of thousands for IVF, when out of pocket, it all due up front.

“[Her] poor baby will have a lot to deal with when she grows up.”

Just for being the child of some who’s a lowlife for not being able to afford tens of thousands of dollars out of pocket up front and having a baby anyway. Oh hell, my parents and your parents are all terrible people for having babies if they couldn’t afford tens of thousands of dollars in one lump sum before having us!

“If she’s in any sort of financial shape to have children, I would think she could put it on a credit card that her IVF treatments alone could be paid over time.”

Some people avoid debt when at all possible, and why use credit cards for what insurance is covering?

The reaction to people going through fertility treatments is awful. Absolutely awful. This is why people are afraid to be open about what they’re going through, why they feel so alone. Fear about how others will take it. I never would have thought the reactions would be hoping it doesn’t work, someone once saying she hoped the baby dies because I’m too selfish to adopt, etc..


Protected: The cruelty of some people online

Filed under: Frustrations — Aria @ 2:06 pm

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Almost shots-time November 16, 2008

Filed under: The process — Aria @ 4:26 pm

Lupron shots start tomorrow, and the Menopur and Follistim starts in another 10 days or so.


A collection of (more) thoughts November 11, 2008

You know what?  I still am in the mindset that this isn’t really happening, that there’s no chance we’ll get to be parents.  I’m used to having it in my head that there’s no way IVF could be afforded in any way, and, in fact, when Cody and I began dating, one thing we did talk about was whether or not he could stand a childless life.  Children were (and are) something we both wanted, but the out-of-pocket IVF cost was prohibitive.  It wasn’t until I casually mentioned to a doctor during my yearly girl-torture about IVF, and she told us some states require IVF to be covered by insurance, and that Apple here has a plan that covers it.  From there, Cody shifted his focus a bit from working toward a job at Digg and instead to working his ass off to get into Apple.

Only 11 days ago we had our first appointment at Stanford after United kept being a pain in the ass and sending us to doctors whose services United actually didn’t cover (what, were they hoping we’d accept that and just pay out of pocket?!).  After the run-around we had before, seeing multiple doctors and finding out the office visits were all that United covered, naturally we didn’t go to Stanford with a lot of hope.  But, before the first appointment, they verified that IVF IS a covered procedure, so now if United decides to back out, they’re going to have to answer to fraking STANFORD about why they will no longer pay.  You can piss off individual people, but don’t piss off one of the nation’s top IVF centers without expecting something bad to happen.  So we’re good to go.

And in the 11 days after that first appointment, not counting that appointment, we’ve already been down there an additional four times together, plus one time I had to go back on my own for blood, and a surgical procedure, and I’m already on some pills, and this Friday there’s another ultrasound, and then Monday it’ll be shots galore, and today this arrived via FedEx:

Yeah, like that’s not intimidating. That’s the stuff that will go into me in under three weeks. Each of those boxes in the upper right contains what’s shown out of the box right next to it. The two bags in the upper center contains dozens of needles, and the thin things with orange caps in the lower leg are more needles. The stuff in the bottom center has to be mixed right before each dose. The stuff in the bag to the left of the pill bottles is what will make the eggs ready to be sucked out of me 36 hours after taking. Then there are antibiotics, progesterone, and anti-anxiety pills. And Cody gets to organize all of this. 🙂 Because he’ll have to give me all the shots every day because I’m chicken.

I’ve heard that, once things come together, it can all take off like a rocket.  That’s damn true.  And what else is lucky is that they don’t have a ton of IVF couples at any given tome due to the often-last-minute nature of things.  We may find out on the 5th that the eggs are ready to be retrieved the 7th, so we go in the 7th.  Of course our doctor has to be available.  She can’t be if she personally has 20 patients.  Stanford accepts about 1,000 patients (counting both singles and couples as one) per yer into its IVF program (they have I believe about 20 doctors total for their program, so about four patients per month each), and not all those patients go on to do IVF.  At the class on Friday one couple dropped out halfway through.  They got us in now, otherwise it would have been halfway through next year.  So we feel fortunate that it’s taken off as fast as it has because next summer we won’t be here anymore.

It’s all still a bit unreal.  It might seem more real when I get poked every day.  The days are dragging on.  I can’t wait until everything’s done so we know if it worked!!