Are we parents yet?

The Clements’ IVF Journey

Heavy decisions February 23, 2009

Today we had an appointment with out RE and I ended up crying and feeling like an idiot when the doctor told me we’d been on her mind a few times since the test came back negative, and that she’s sad for us. Dr. Baker is very sweet. I like her very much.

Two IVF cycles without being parents is hard. So we’re going to do a natural FET cycle. Usually the cycle is medically controlled, but there’s new evidence than a natural cycle has a higher chance of success.

What this means is that we’ll basically go with my natural cycle using ultrasounds and OPKs (ovulation predictor kits) to determine when I will naturally ovulate, and then there will be just one injection of an hCG called Ovidrel. Seven days later we will transfer embryos. This is rather than using Lupron and other drugs to basically control everything to a T. And 15 days after the Ovidrel will be a pregnancy test.

If this cycle doesn’t work, we’re going to need to resort to using Essure to block up my fallopian tubes closer to my uterus. Right now they’re blocked higher up. Closing them lower down will lessen the risk of hydrosalpinx causing any problems. The downside to Essure while pregnant though is that it can result in a ruptured membrane, meaning a chance of early delivery, meaning I would be even higher risk than I already will be.

I believe the plan is to thaw four and hope to have two make it. The chance for each is about 80%. I know Dr. Baker doesn’t want to thaw more than four right now, to save five for the case that we need to resort to the Essure.

And this is the point where we’d need to weigh our options, to try the Essure or to try a surrogate. Adoption using an agency is out of the question unfortunately, so we really are at the end of what we can do. One cycle of FET, and then to either try Essure and then another FET with the risks, or a surrogate. We are incredibly lucky that two people we absolutely trust have both offered to surrogate without our asking. Rachel, a friend of mine since high school, is currently TTC herself, so I think she’ll be out for the time being. And Randi, Cody’s ex-wife (who is still a very good friend to us both) offered, and for some reason I can’t quite pinpoint, I really like the idea of her being our surrogate.

Heh, Cody and Randi would be listed together on the birth certificate and I’d have to adopt my own baby….

Lucky as we are in the surrogate-department, I’m still feeling very sad and without any hope. If this next try doesn’t work, should we go with a surgical procedure and implants that could result in early birth, or should we go the surrogate route and I’d be the adoptive mother to my own child, not on the birth certificate? I want to carry my own children, and now don’t feel like anything will make us parents.

 

Having self-esteem issues February 20, 2009

Filed under: Frustrations — Aria @ 9:51 pm

I feel like a freaking failure. What comes so easily to most people I can’t even accomplish using the most advanced technology in the world at one of the world’s top facilities. I can’t get a baby to live long enough to be born viable, and it’s my stupid body’s fault. That’s why I didn’t see my eating disorder as a problem for so long, even when I ended up in the ER last year. It was one thing I felt I could control with my body. People try to prevent babies and make them anyway. I try and still fail. Almost everyone I know my age have children. Multiple. And I’m failing at having just one be born alive.

Since realizing yesterday I’d be in the second trimester if we hadn’t lost the twins, I’ve been having a very very very hard time. I don’t cry easily, but that’s what’s been happening when I’m alone.

 

Up next: FET February 19, 2009

Filed under: Medical appointments and stuff,The process — Aria @ 4:08 pm

Hiding away from the world sometimes helps me. When I stay home, I can control what I see and hear a lot better than when I go out and about. Today it just hit me that I’d be in the second trimester if we hadn’t lost the ones in December. This stuff is just so damned hard.

We are gearing up for an FET (new one, Frozen Embryo Transfer). This may be the closest to a natural TTC cycle as I’ve ever had. Instead of weeks of multiple shots a night for an IVF cycle, it’ll be transvaginal ultrasounds, using OPKs, and then finally a trigger shot to cause ovulation. Then frozen embryos will be transferred.

Now I have no clue how to properly use an OPK or which brands are best. What I have found simply states not to use the first urine of the morning. What about if I wake up five times during the night to go, which happens sometimes? Then what? So I’m trying to do some quickie-research.

Our next appointment is on Monday at 10:20.

We’re lucky. Two people we trust completely have seriously offered to surrogate, if it comes to that for us. Hopefully it won’t, but it’s on the table.

 

To the commenter with an IP address of 71.80.108.154 February 17, 2009

Filed under: Random thoughts — Aria @ 12:54 pm

You said:

“Well, first, our neighbors have a baby. The only sound that gets through the walls is their baby. Often. Doesn’t matter which room I’m in, I can hear their baby. And it makes me want to slam my head into the walls.”

You know what?

With your sorry attitude, you don’t deserve a baby!!!

How very fortunate you are to not know the pain of infertility and how the sound of a baby is like salt on an open wound. I can’t even to into my own home to escape it because the sound is on the other side of the wall. So how about you come out from behind cowardly anonymity and tell me why that piece you quoted from my last entry is a bad attitude that makes me undeserving of a baby. If you won’t identify yourself, then you’re welcome to shut up.

 

Protected: Know what makes this harder? February 16, 2009

Filed under: General thoughts — Aria @ 5:43 pm

This content is password protected. To view it please enter your password below:

 

Know what makes this harder?

Filed under: Sadness — Aria @ 5:43 pm

Well, first, our neighbors have a baby. The only sound that gets through the walls is their baby. Often. Doesn’t matter which room I’m in, I can hear their baby. And it makes me want to slam my head into the walls.

And the next person who wants to say, “Well, you can just try again,” nonchalantly, had better shut up or put up the money for it. $17,000 per IVF cycle (we’ve done two), or about $6,000 for a frozen transfer, which we will try next, plus the costs of other testing and procedures we had to do prior to the first IVF cycle startig. This is different from people who ask if we’ll be able to try again. Some people do just think we can easily try again, like money isn’t an issue. Okay, so maybe some people are rich enough that this kind of money isn’t a big deal, and maybe some people don’t want kids so they don’t see why this is a big deal. Don’t tell us we can just try again unless you’re willing to give us the money for it. If it’s not pocket change to you it sure as hell isn’t pocket change to us either. The people I know with the kind of debt we now have either have it for grad school loans or for a house. They got something for it. We got nothing. Nothing but heartache and tears and more debt to pile on. And Cody is willing to take on as much debt as it takes, six figures if we must, and I am very thankful to him for that

And anyone who thinks that the disappointment and sadness an infertile couple feels after a failed cycle is no different than a fertile couple who tried and didn’t get it that month – get the hell out of my blog. You’re not welcome here for that kind of insult. This is nothing, NOTHING, like what a fertile couple feels. They can just try again and have lots of fun sex. It’s free for them. It’s fun. They have the knowledge that they can try again. For us, the question is if we can afford to take on more debt. Trying again the next month means gambling a lot of money and doctor’s orders for NO sex and painful shots. So it’s a lot of money and it’s no fun and it hurts.

Yes, I actually was told that fertile people feel the same kind of disappointment. No they fucking don’t!! And it’s incredibly stupid for someone to say that!! Let me see if I can find a way to explain it so anyone who doesn’t understand can understand…. Imagine driving a mile to Disneyland, and when you get there, it’s unexpectedly closed. Okay, you’re disappointed that it’s closed, you don’t get what you want, but you can go back the next Saturday. No big deal. Now let’s say you flew across the country to get there, saved up for a long time, spent a lot of money getting there, and you finally make it, and it’s closed. Well, you can’t go back the next Saturday. The journey’s too far and costs too much. When you can go back will depend on when you have that kind of money again, or can get the credit. So your disappointment is much large compared to the local person. And now make it a child. The potential “pay-off” is higher. The sting is much, much greater, for the infertile, incomparable to the fertile person’s annoyance at having to wait a month. The fertile person has the chance to try again. The infertile person may not.

I actually had someone tell me on a forum that the disappointment a fertile couple feels is the same thing. That made me incredibly angry.

Right now I don’t care about what’s going on with most people other than my IF friends. We are in mourning right now. Our dream died a little bit more. So I don’t care about anything right now except the dream of parenthood and those going through the same heartbreak we are all suffering.

 

Got the call, and it’s official. Negative.

Filed under: Sadness — Aria @ 12:29 pm

Negative.

Long before IVF was even a consideration, adoption was the first course, but I was one turned down because of medical issues that came after being hit by a car. It made me too risky. As they see it, what if I have problems from it again? by the way, the children in mind were a set of black sisters aged 8 and 10. Older children who are in pairs and not white have a very hard time getting permanent homes, but they’ll stay in foster care until they are dumped in turn the day each turns 18. Better that than a mom who’d love them and take care of them because that mom was unfortunate enough to be hit by a car while crossing a road. Punish all of us for someone else running a red light. In spare time, I’ve called around over the last few months and the agencies I spoke with told me that they probably would not approve us because of my medical, but I was welcome to pay the fees to get into the system and be evaluated and they’d let us know then if we could proceed. Of course we’re welcome to give them $8,000-$12,000 (just to get started – the total fees are much, MUCH more by the end) for them to give us an official no. All fees paid in adoption are non-refundable to legally keep it all as adoption rather than selling in a system where perfect white babies somehow cost more to adopt out than an older black boy who will be in the system longer.

So it’s a biological child or none for us.

I’m supposed to call back with the first day of my period and we’ll set up an FET (frozen embryo transfer) since we have eight. Here’s another effect of Octo-Mom – it’s tempting to have all of them transferred. Not that we would, but hell, still tempting, you know? And also Stanford is ethical and so they wouldn’t transfer so many anyway.

I just want to go take a nap and never wake up from this nightmare.