Fortune Cookies 

We had Chinese for lunch with Carla’s family today. We each got a fortune cookie. Mine is the top one and Carla’s is the bottom one. We are most certainly embarking on a most delightful journey!

  

What is the best fortune cookie fortune you have ever had?

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Milk is Carla’s best friend

So last night I was all nice and comfy in bed. I was crocheting a granny square blanket. I was warm and yep, just very comfortable.

Then I hear Carla yell out to me. She asked for milk. I knew what this meant.

She would throw up if I didn’t deliver milk in the next 3.5 seconds.

I sprang into action and ran, not very fast, mind you, to the kitchen to pour some milk. I raced back to where she was standing in the bathroom and handed it to her.

For some reason, milk seems to calm her tummy down when she is feeling very sick. We very rarely drink milk but lately we have been going through at least half a litre every day.

Oh and whoever named morning sickness, I think they were on drugs. It’s the only explanation. Carla seems to be worse from about lunch time onwards. Then it gets pretty bad around 4-5pm. The other night we were picking up some Chinese takeaway and the carpark saw what she had eaten that day.

Hopefully it settles down and she can start to enjoy this more. It must be so hard to enjoy it when you feel sick!

What was I thinking?!

I decided to enrol in University. I want to do something that will enable me to either work part time and do some work at home or be a stay at home mum and work from home.

So I am studying a Bachelor of Arts (Professional Writing and Publishing). It is all completely online and I can choose if I want to study full or part time. I start on Monday and will be doing 1 prep course and then 1 actual unit.

I’m looking forward to seeing how I go with this. I so badly want to do well and be able to contribute even more in the future.

Pingu is doing well, as is Carla. 8 weeks today! I can’t believe we have known for 4.5 weeks now. Apparently Pingu is now the size of a strawberry! Carla has been feeling sick on an off and occasionally throwing up. It seems to be worse after lunch and into the night.

So this year has a lot to bring and I’m so excited for all of it!

Oh dear, I have been slack!

Wow, it has been a month since I last posted and so much has happened.

I’ll start with our ceremony. it was perfect! Such a beautiful day in all ways! The weather was perfect and we had some gorgeous photos taken.

Now the IVF cycle…

EPU was 3 days before our ceremony. I went in and they got 20 eggs! I couldn’t believe it and thought I was hallucinating the number when I looked at my hand as I was still very drowsy from the anaesthetic. But nope, the number 20 was definitely written on my hand.

Carla came in the room where they keep you after recovery and I showed her my hand. She looked so relieved as for some reason, she had the number 8 stuck in her head. I went home and we relaxed. In the afternoon the lab called to say how many were mature. 18! We were so happy with that!

I was a bit uncomfortable when we first got home and then I was in a lot of pain. last EPU I just slept most of the day away but this time I couldn’t get comfortable enough to sleep. I dozed a couple of times but found it hard to breathe when lying down. I didn’t know if this was normal or not. I called the IVF nurses and they said the professor would call me back. When he did, he told me that my right ovary was not being co-operative when he was collecting the eggs and so he had to manipulate my stomach and uterus a bit and wasn’t surprised I was in pain. Well, that made sense and I slept propped up on a mountain of pillows that night.

The next day we got a call to that 12 out of the 18 eggs had fertilised overnight and that they were watching 5 other good quality eggs that hadn’t interacted with the sperm. We had no idea they did this as our old clinic just discarded any that didn’t fertilise overnight. I think Carla was a bit sceptical about how good they would be as they should have fertilised already.

The morning of our ceremony was day 3 for the embryos. I got the call around 8.30am and was told we now had 15 embryos on Day 3! That is such an amazing number! I ran back into the rumpus to tell Carla and all I could say is “You’re going to be so happy. we have 15 embryos!”. I found out later that she was about to tell me that she didn’t want to know but too late! She was worried that it would be bad news and she would be upset for our ceremony. We were both stoked though! All day we kept just saying the number 15 to each other.

Monday was transfer day. we went in and the professor told us he was very happy with how everything was looking. He then told us that on Day 5 we had 8 blastocysts.

8.

One more than 7 and 1 less than 9.

8.

That is such a fantastic number!

We put one back into Carla and they would freeze the other 7. We went out for a lovely breakfast together as we had a really good experience with the transfer (previously they would hurt Carla a lot but this doctor was very gentle and so good about it all). We had been home for only an hour or so and were curled up on the couch together when the lab called me again.

My heart dropped and I know Carla’s did as well.

They said they were calling to let us know that since we left, 1 other embryo had caught up so they would actually be freezing 8.

We were in total shock. This cycle had gone so much better than we expected.

So fast forward to 5 days later on the Saturday. We were at a friends, having stayed the previous night and decided Carla should pee on a stick.

To our amazement, there was a line. A bloody good line!

We were going to have a baby! Finally!

Over the next week or so the line just kept getting darker and darker and on the following Friday Carla went for a blood test.

HCG – 488.

Such a good result!

A week later there was a follow up blood test (yesterday) and her HCG is now 3769. Carla was concerned as her progesterone had dropped a little (it does fluctuate day to day). So we decided that she would start on progesterone pessaries in case it kept dropping and our little one didn’t stick around. The doctor was fully supportive of this, even though he didn’t think it was needed, but for our peace of mind he said it wouldn’t do any harm.

So we now have a little Pingu (bub’s nickname) due in early January next year!

We are so excited and so happy and we can’t wait to become parents!

Ouch! That hurt!

Two nights ago was the first of the Orgalutran injections.

I knew they would hurt more than the others and I was right!

The needle tip is blunter than any of the others we have used. it requires just a little more pressure to push it in. I was already nervous and had a little bit of a teary moment – I usually do before any new kind of needle. I know it stresses Carla out a little but I can’t help it.

So, I was lying on the bed, pinching both sides of my tummy. I had told Carla not to tell me which one she was doing first. She did the Orgalutran first and I’m glad she did because I would have hated to know it was coming second.

To me, the needle felt like it was about 5 times thicker than others – though I think that was just because it is blunter. The liquid also stings like a bitch going in. Then to top it all off, it stings for a few hours later and your tummy gets really red and itchy.

Sounds lovely, doesn’t it?

Last night was the second one of these. It still hurt but I was a lot less nervous because I knew what was coming.

I had a blood test yesterday morning as well. I don’t know what is going on with my veins but they don’t seem to like this clinic very much. They had to go for my hand veins again as they tried my arm and couldn’t get anything. It was also the first time that I have had a proper needle for the blood test. I have only ever had them with butterfly needles so i was pretty nervous.

It wasn’t too bad and hurt less than I thought it would.

My levels came back not quite where the Professor would like them so I was asked to up the dose of Gonal-F to 300 daily. I think that will really start things going.

When we were at the clinic yesterday, we discovered that even though there is only 2 days difference in our cycles, that Carla’s cycle will be considered a full frozen embryo transfer. This happened at Fertility First as well and they charged us just an equipment fee, instead of the entire FET cost.

IVFA doesn’t do anything like this so we were a bit annoyed that we would have to pay over $3000 extra because we are 2 days apart in our cycles. Our doctor is on holidays so his PA said she would email and get him to see if we can stim Carla just a little to get her there a bit faster so we can do a fresh transfer with her.

He called this morning and she starts on Gonal-F 75 tonight!

A scan and bloods on Thursday morning for her so we can see how she is going. If she looks to be going faster than me then he will give her an antagonist (Orgalutran) to stop her ovulating. We will then trigger at the same time so we can line up for a fresh transfer.

So exciting! We have always hoped to be able to do a fresh transfer.

Bring on Thursday and seeing where Carla is up to

~ Anna

First needle is complete!

Yesterday, I was at work and the nurses called me to say my levels were great and to start 175 Gonal-F every night and then on Sunday to start the Orgalutran. Next blood test is 7.30am Monday morning to check how it is all going.

So last night, we decide that 10pm would be a good time to do the injection. We have a dinner commitment on Saturday night and don’t want to rush home just to do the needle. Especially as no one knows we are doing this.

I get the Gonal-F pen ready and swab the area. Carla puts it in and this liquid stings more than the Puregon did. It really might have been just because the liquid is so cold! It’s not as bad as I thought it would be but I do get nervous if I haven’t had a needle for a little while. Carla is really good at calming me down though, she’s really great like that.

Once the needle has been left in for a few seconds after pushing the liquid out, Carla goes to take the needle out. She under-estimated how long this needle is compared to others we have used. not realising it was a little bit longer, when she pulls it out, the tip ‘pings’ out of my skin because it was at an angle.

I must have looked shocked and Carla looks almost devastated. Immediately she starts apologising. I assure her that it’s okay, that it didn’t hurt at all. It just made me laugh at the ‘ping’ noise and that’s what my shocked face was from.

Good news is, there is no sting afterwards! With the Puregon, it would sting for about half an hour after but with this one, I felt fine. Today the site is a little tender, but they always are.

I swear last night I could feel little niggles in my ovaries already. I know it’s probably a bit too early for that, but I’m sure I will in the next few days.

~ Anna

 

The Witch is Here

Yesterday the witch reared her head. I was so glad that it didn’t take any longer to arrive because that would have put us dangerously close to our ceremony. As it is, EPU is expected to be 3-5 days prior, depending on how I to react to the meds.

So I finished my 5 day course of Provera on Saturday. I was pleasantly surprised there were not a great deal of side effects from this. I did get a couple of headaches and an upset stomach, along with major PMS symptoms. I actually cried in a part of a movie that wasn’t even sad! But good movie! I highly recommend White House Down. I’m not a fan of overly political movies, but I really enjoyed this one.

We already had a nurses orientation booked for yesterday so they could show us how to use the medications properly. We are on a whole new playing field with the meds. We haven’t used any of them before. It’s making me a little nervous, not knowing how I will react to this lot.

The orientation went well, it was just Carla and I with 2 nurses. There was much discussion about how different this cycle would be to the previous one I had one. This will be a short cycle, where they stimulate your ovaries and then give you another medication to prevent ovulation. All up, it is generally only 2 weeks from the start of your period to egg pick up.

Because I had started my period a few days prior to what they thought I would, my medication hadn’t been ordered. That was okay though! The nurse sent through the request to the pharmacy at Norwest Private Hospital and we picked it up after work. 3 big boxes of Gonal-F now reside in our fridge and the Orgalutran is in our bedroom.

This morning we went back to the clinic for my CD2 (cycle day 2) blood test. This was to check my levels are where they should be before I start stimming. If they are, the first injection will be tonight!

The nurse doing the blood test today was lovely. Carla had gone next door to have some bloods done at the private hospital so it was just me, having my first blood test alone. I explained to the nurse that I have a needle phobia and asked if she could use the smaller needle. She said of course she would. I also told her that my veins are pretty deep and often hard to find. After looking for a few minutes, she got a heat pack. Even that didn’t help! The veins in my arms were nowhere to be seen. She found a tiny little one in my hand and got the blood from there. I barely felt a thing, yay!

So, now we wait and hope that everything looks good. In the meantime, look where they took the blood from!

~ Anna

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