Saturday, March 29, 2014

Having Myself a Little (ugly) Pity Party

So, my life has been completely consumed with school lately, as it is Annual Review season (meetings with families and CSE committees and students to discuss this year and next year's IEP). All-consuming. Plus, the dreaded state ELA tests are next week, and I've had a lot of lesson planning to do, and I've been busy with my second job as an unofficial Fertility Coordinator for myself with the insane amount of paperwork required for all we're doing. So I've been a little missing from the blog world.

First, the paperwork. We are moving a semen sample and our six 2PN embryos from the donor egg cycle over to our new clinic, which seemed like it would be somewhat easy to do. Wrong. In February we filled out all the paperwork from our previous clinic, which involved notary publics and mailing multiple sets of paperwork as at first they only sent us what was needed for the embryos, not the sperm. Then more notary public for the semen transfer. We keep getting bills for the storage for both, but we can't pay them because they will prorate it for just the months we stored everything at Clinic #1, and we were kind of hoping to have that be just January and February. Except what wasn't made clear to us was that we need to fill out JUST AS MUCH PAPERWORK from the new clinic in order for them to receive the frozen goods. And again, notary involved. Since we don't have one in our pocket, that means waiting until a Saturday so that we can go to the bank and get it stamped. All that didn't get settled until last weekend, which means hopefully we're only paying for one additional month of storage before we have to pay for this year's storage at Clinic #2. Plus the shipping, which is of course expensive since they treat embryos like kidneys or hearts -- someone must accompany them as they are living tissue. The sperm not so much, but hopefully they are shipping it all as a package deal.

Why are we transferring the sperm? It's a sample from a year or two ago, and so it's "younger Bryce" -- he wants to wait and see what Monday's sample looks like before deciding which one to keep. Whichever one is better we keep, and we destroy the other. Who knows with sperm? SO MUCH COORDINATION! Also, they are going to thaw our 2PNs, I'm assuming sooner than later, and grow them out to Day 5, and then we'll see if we have anything to store. Then it gets complicated.

Because we are doing a 50/50 split with the donor sperm, we will actually get to see three different sets of embryos with all this brou-ha-ha. 1) my eggs and Bryce's sperm, 2) my eggs and donor sperm, 3) donor eggs and Bryce's sperm. The only permutation we're missing is donor eggs and donor sperm. What a scientific way to look at this! Of course, it's too bad that you can't tell much about an embryo by looking at it. Can't judge the book by its cover, so to say. But we can look at fertilization rates and get a better idea. And we're still holding out hope that we won't have to use the donor sperm, but we are glad we have it since overwhelmingly it looks like that's our issue. But, at the same time, we have a new lab that we're working with, so who knows if maybe that makes a difference with all our own materials? WHAT A SURREAL POSITION TO BE IN.

So now, the pity party. I am going to sound pretty small and bitter, and for that I apologize minimally. Why minimally? Because I don't want to disregard my feelings, no matter how ugly they may be.

I am finding myself on an infertile island. I am finding myself in a position where it seems that everyone is getting pregnant all around me, fertile and infertile, and I AM ALL ALONE. I know this isn't really the case, I know that there are other people who haven't "crossed over," and I know "crossing over" is tenuous for a good long while. And this really didn't start with the infertile piece.

It started with a moment I easily could have missed on facebook, for I am not "friends" with the person who I discovered was pregnant through a post someone else who I am "friends" with placed on the other, apparently pregnant, person's wall. (How weird is our society that all of these words make sense for social interaction or so-called social interaction? wall and post and friends) The person in question is apparently pretty far in a pregnancy. I am genuinely happy to hear that this person is pregnant, as I know she's wanted a family for a long time and she had a heck of a time finding her lobster and having all those pieces fit together. So why did I cry for a good hour after reading that post? BECAUSE WHEN I WORKED WITH HER, IN THE 2010-2011 SCHOOL YEAR, SHE HAD NOT EVEN MET HER HUSBAND YET. I had done two IVFs by this time, and not to draw comparisons and make this a competition or anything, but I had been wildly unsuccessful TWICE with high-level infertility treatment intervention and she was still looking for her lobster (if you don't get this reference you need to watch Friends) and now, I am still applying high-level medical technology to my cause and she has met a person, gotten engaged, gotten married, and gotten pregnant, and IT WAS NOT A WHIRLWIND. It was a decent timeline. I just have been trying to have a baby and not succeeding for THAT LONG that it's possible for someone to go through all the "normal" life steps and get pregnant in the time it took me to do two more fresh IVFs, two frozens, a donor egg IVF, and a frozen DE IVF, and look for a new clinic. All with nothing to show for it but pictures of my pregnant fallopian tube and the accompanying scars on my lower belly and a precious picture of a little sac in my uterus to prove that this is possible. A lot of loss. A lot of grief.

I know you're not supposed to compare yourself to others, but how the hell are you supposed to feel when you seem to be swimming in one of those Endless Pools and everyone else is in the ocean? I feel like I'm stuck on a treadmill, sweating up a storm going nowhere, and everyone else is Forrest Gump, running cross country. Literally.

This is where my feeling of left-behindness and yes, jealousy, really get ugly. Because I am happy, genuinely happy, when fellow infertile people get pregnant. But it is getting harder and harder for that not to get swallowed up in the conflicting emotion of AGAIN? Someone who is struggling is pregnant AGAIN and it's not me? Happy--not a cop-out, not a lie, I am really happy for everyone who has made it to a double line and positive betas and pictures of baking babylings. But incredibly, desperately sad for me. I used to get a little jolt of hope, and I could say "if she can make it, I can make it!" But now it's harder to take that attitude, because I'm still here. I'm still sitting here with my empty uterus and empty guest room with drawers full of onesies and pregnancy books just waiting to be used.

I had a community of ladies through fertility yoga, and one by one they got pregnant and I didn't. A few were also unsuccessful and either found closure in living child-free (not an easy decision to make in the face of so much technology and "hope" thrown at us) or began pursuing adoption, another path that is hopeful but full of a mountain of paperwork and heartbreaks of its own (and let's not forget the vast expense). Many, many of the ladies passed me by and left for prenatal yoga, and then started talking about having a second child. And now they are. An announcement just came through (facebook again, remind me why I participate in this when it tends to cause me such pain?) that someone is having another baby. Happy, I'm happy, because I know how badly she wanted a second child, but how is it POSSIBLE that people I did yoga poses to try to get pregnant with just a few years ago are having their SECOND babies thanks to technology? WHY CAN'T THIS WORK FOR ME?

It makes me feel like an utter failure. It makes me feel incredibly lonely. And then I feel horrible, because I should be happy. But, as my awesome therapist says, "Stop shoulding on yourself!" I feel how I feel. I am sad and lonely and worried that I am chasing a dream and that this is just not going to happen the way I hoped it would. And I cannot tell you how happy I am that people who have suffered through infertility on the blog world are getting their ultrasounds and betas and making announcements... but can I be perfectly honest and say how sad it feels to have a blogroll full of ultrasounds and tentative happiness? It feels like I am even further left behind.

I realize that I am going into another cycle and that I could very well be an ultrasound person soon... and I don't begrudge anyone their joy or their pictures (I mean, I click on them, right?), and when I congratulate you, I MEAN IT. It's just so hard to try to think that that's going to me in a few months because I have done this to myself over and over and it's never been me. There's a first time for everything, and maybe this is my time. I refuse to say my turn, because I find that phrase incredibly insulting. There's no line, there's no "take a number and you'll be pregnant next," there's no step I have to take before it can be me next. It either is or it isn't. And it's not like I want other people to suffer with me, because this sucks. I just hate feeling like the last one picked in gym (and oh man I know what that feels like), like the girl with no one on her dance card and everyone else is waltzing away. I hate feeling this way, because it feels small and ugly and it takes away from what should be joy.

It's another way I am damaged by this experience, I guess.

This pity party won't last long. I'll pull myself out and try to stop feeling a little more bummed with every good news post on facebook or blog. I don't want to sink deeper into a feeling of hopelessness, especially since I start meds in less than a week and I have a lot to look forward to.

It's just so hard when you have years of NO in your face and you try so hard to cling to NOT YET and to take other people's success as a beacon of hope that it can be you too, but after a while you just feel a bit defeated and very, very alone. I just can't think positively all the time, I've taken hit after hit and while I wouldn't do this if I didn't believe success was possible, it can be awfully hard to believe that this truly is possible and maybe my belly will be expanding in a joyous way and not a drowned-my-sorrows-in-too-many-GF brownies way.

My meds are in the fridge. My baseline is Monday. Hope is coming, and this dark cloud will lift. I can only hope that soon I can take those onesies out of their musty drawers and update you with my own good news. That this summer will be the summer of expanding waistlines and nausea and exhaustion that are for something good. In the meantime, please do accept my apologies for feeling sad as I congratulate all of the pregos out there, and please accept the joy hiding in my tears, as it really did used to be the other way around not too long ago. I hope to join everyone in this elusive motherhood business and be less a sad little spectator who can't quite make the team despite a grueling training schedule.

Thank you for sticking with me, thank you for listening even if it was hard, thank you for accepting all of my feelings, not just the positive ones. I have to believe that I am not alone in feeling this way, but we don't always air our ugly the way we air our hopes and dreams and THINK POSITIVE mantras. I think it's every bit as important to share the stuff that we feel a bit ashamed of, because while it's hard and it's not pretty, it's real. And maybe you feel just a little less lonely if your ugly thoughts are echoed in someone else's post.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Plan is in Place: Why Do I Feel So Nauseous?

Well, the plan is in the mail. After fifteen billion phone calls this week with a variety of lovely people at the Buffalo clinic, we have dates and meds are ordered and I am on my way towards this first new ride on a well-used merry go round. Somebody else is pushing, so I guess it's not the same old same old, but I could just throw up right now from everything involved.

Normally I feel better once a plan is in place and I have dates in a calendar. Maybe the calendar has to be in my hands for me to feel better. I mean, this cycle requires a LOT of coordinating, and I am good at that. But the thing is, I DON'T WANT TO BE GOOD AT IT.

I don't want to be on the phone for what feels like 4 hours a week at least with various medical professionals.
I don't want to nearly empty my FSA/HSA account in March. I have literally paid for the integrin test, a couple copays, acupuncture twice, and the giant medication bill today for my stimulation cycle, and I am left with less than $200. And my giant medication bill was way less, thanks to two things -- the absolute kindness of ladies willing to gift their unused meds (you know who you are and you are amazing souls), so that I did not have to buy Ganarelix or Menopur, although I found out I will be having Solution X (the incredibly disturbing name of a menopur-like med the clinic manufactures themselves, which sounds like weird science but as long as it's not expensive I'm good with). Also, apparently there's this thing called a Fertility Pharmacy Care Card that Walgreens Specialty Pharmacy told me about, which shaved $200.00 off my bill for meds today because you pay $25, but then it's $100 off every $1000 of medication costs for stims. Which is actually nothing to sniff at.
I don't want to think about how much all this is costing overall, because between the donor sperm being way more than I was expecting and the integrin test being about $600 or so and the meds costing $2200 and change (thank you thank you med angel for making it less) and that's just FOR STARTERS, I might need to order more... and then the acupuncture at $70 a pop and I've been twice and probably have at least 4-5 more times to go just before retrieval... and we haven't even paid for the package yet.
It could be much worse. It has been way more expensive than this before, but I AM SO TIRED OF THROWING MONEY AT THIS.

Especially, ESPECIALLY when people on Facebook do things that remind me of what a COMPLETELY DIFFERENT WORLD I AM IN. Like spreading that blog post that's been making the rounds about how totally impossible making a second child is because you are so tired and consumed with child #1. Everything about this assumes that you are too tired to get down in the sack and do that deed that makes babies. Or that you accidentally have poop on your neck that your husband kisses, or you leave talking toys in the bed, or your first child yells for you as soon as you start making out, or you finally have energy to do it and time to do it and it's not your fertile time of month. WELL LISTEN, WHINERS. It's NEVER my fertile time of month. My experience to make a FIRST child involves bleeding money and bleeding into vials and giving strips of my uterine flesh for tests that just insure that everything is normal and so mystery still going strong and driving an hour and fifteen minutes to my new clinic and spending hours on the phone with nurses and secretaries and doctors and embryologists and billing specialists and scheduling specialists and swallowing ginormous pills that may or may not make you more receptive or more eggy but again cost a lot of money and even after doing all of this I don't have a FIRST child. The wherewithal to have free sex has zero to do with it. And I have had to come to grips with the fact that a second child may well be a pipe dream since child #1 seems to be incredibly elusive and very, very, time consuming/expensive/exhausting/expensive/painful/testing every limit we have to make. There. Rant over. Apparently that repost on Facebook pissed me off more than I thought.

So, on to more positive things...the plan.

1) We are definitely uncoupling retrieval and transfer. Retrieval is mid-April, transfer is likely June so I can have a hysteroscopy in May to rid my womb of polypoid tissue intruders and prep my lining so it can get all nice and receptive.
2) I was a little upset to find that my retrieval is during Dr. Fabulous's vacation and that they trade off months at this clinic, so it wasn't going to be Dr. Fabulous anyway. I AM LETTING GO, DAMMIT. I am trying so hard to let go of these things. It is fine. The other doctor is great, and we get Dr. Fabulous for transfer which in my opinion is magic time anyway.
3) Meds are ordered/obtained -- 3 Follistim 900 pens (my first experience with the mongo pen), an unspecified and unclear monetary amount of the ominously named "Solution X," 10 syringes of Ganarelix, 1 syringe of Ovidrel. All a girl needs to pump her ovaries to bursting and ripen them up for retrieval. Go me.
4) I have my baseline 3/31 and Bryce has his semen analysis on the same day. I have a funny little fear of either of us traveling to Buffalo by ourselves, so while I could have had the baseline here in Rochester, since Bryce needed his S.A. done too I grouped them together. Also this way we can meet the team, since I have spoken to a whole bunch of faceless people at this point. I LIKE FACES WITH MY VOICES. Oh, and my choices for baseline were 3/31, 4/1, or 4/2. Awesome, because 4/1 and 4/2 are the first two dates for the NYS ELA exams, which I kinda would like to be there for since, you know, I TEACH SPED ELA. Always amazes me how these things line up just so.
5) Getting to know a whole new clinic of people is tough. Everyone is super nice, and they are getting to know my sense of humor but not entirely appreciating it 100%. They will learn or I will drive them crazy, I guess. I have spoken to at least 5 different individuals already and it makes me dizzy. I know their names though, which makes me feel better. I will feel better when I meet them in person.
6) I start meds 4/4, which means I will be on stims for 6 days when I have my annual review meetings, which should make for an interesting and possibly weepy day, and I will be on stims for 8 days when we have Bryce's 40th birthday party.
7) Retrieval is the week of 4/14, which means it's during spring break. Nice in that I don't have to take off a lot of work. Horrible in that I spend my break painfully bloated, under anesthesia, and recovering from retrieval which in my experience has been very painful and at times involving OHSS, once fairly seriously. What a great way to spend the last break of the school year, the one that falls after my annual review IEP meetings and so is usually nothing but pure relaxation (minus some lesson planning). Sigh. But, less stress dealing with sub plans, and more sick days in my bank. Yay.

That's it! There it is! The master plan. 4/3 starts my daily wheatgrass shot extravaganza, and after last night's exception from Egg Boot Camp for Bryce's birthday Chateauneuf du Pape, there is absolutely NO booze or coffee from here on out and in April I am going to attempt to seriously limit sugar and dairy and other forms of caffeine like black tea. Good luck to me on that one. I loves my cheese.

On the plus side, I've lost 10 pounds since the end of December. I bought new jeans in late January only to find them loose and baggy about the rear now, which is great. May they be my stimming jeans. The yoga and pilates makes me feel strong and empowered. My arms look pretty nice if I do say so myself and my hamstrings are miraculously stretchy. I hope that all this good health does nothing but push things further into my favor. Stupid BMI is still overweight, but BMI sucks. I hate it. It does not account for body type or distribution or muscle vs fat or big boobalas. So pfffft on you, BMI. Suck it. 10 more pounds would make me super happy, but I would settle for 5. This decoupling makes me feel like I have more control over my body, which is good. Less recovery/nonactive time all at once. More gettin' in shape for baby.

I am hoping I feel better once the meds are here and the plan is on the fridge and we're ready to go. Maybe it will feel more real and hopeful when I'm jamming my first needle into my slightly less flubby middle. It's been almost two years since I've done the stimming, so I'm nervous. I'm not sure how this is all going to work out, so I'm nervous. I can't believe we're doing this AGAIN, so I'm nervous and a bit pukey feeling. But the nerves and the agitation and the frustration that we started this process in 2009 will fade as we get closer to go time and I am actively making the parts that will hopefully result in a baby. And end the questions of why or if, end the feeling of being stuck in a torturous rut, end the spending money on drugs and begin the spending money on diapers. Get me off this effing merry-go-round, Buffalo... please.

Monday, March 10, 2014

I Missed a Milestone; My Husband Turns 40

Ack! I am so bummed, because I so wanted to do something special with my 200th post. It's a milestone for sure, and it went and snuck up on me with my Integrin Results post! I didn't even notice! How do you write 200 posts, some light and funny (as much so as the complete lack of children and heartbreaking medical mysteries can be) and some more difficult to read (but far more difficult to live), and NOT NOTICE WHEN YOU HIT THAT NUMBER? I am ashamed of myself.

And proud. Proud that I have put it all out there and have kept it up, as much as it can be hard to still be here, plugging away, after all these years and all these posts. TWO HUNDRED. That's a lot of storytelling and educating and sharing.

So, uh, Happy 201st Post to Me! :)

I may be biased, but what a handsome guy!
In other news, Bryce has big birthday this Wednesday. He is turning....dunh dunh DUNH... the big 4-0. Which is a good thing, because you don't want to stop having birthdays (that works out badly)...but it's also causing more angst than he anticipated. Most people, myself included, see Bryce as being very accomplished--he's a wonderful engineer, he has carved a niche out for himself in the scientific/project management arena that's kind of unique, he's a known problem solver (got a bug? he'll fix it in a jiffy), he has multiple patents, he is in a very good spot in his career. He has a lovely home and financial security. He has a successful marriage and a pretty happy life. He has talents that he uses to fill his free time such as playing the guitar and woodworking (a good chunk of our furniture has been made by Bryce). He's a good man. 40 has a lot of good stuff behind it.

But there's that pesky missing piece. And it doesn't just hit me on every birthday, it's hitting Bryce pretty hard, too. By 40 you imagine that you'll have your family at least started. That you have people calling you Daddy and branches of family tree stretching out before you. You don't exactly imagine a big fat question mark where that's concerned, a mishmashed little room (is it a guest room? is it a sewing room? is it a library? is it a thinly veiled start of a nursery?) that ought to have a little person in it, and the possibility that your genetic material is off the table. It's not 100% off the table yet, we are giving it the best shot we can, but that vial of donor sperm cryopreserved in the new clinic's lab is definitely weighing heavily on the sense of being 40 and "halfway done" with life without a genetic legacy. Not exactly how I would phrase it, especially given medical technology, but I can't deny the man his feelings at this turning point.

The good thing is he is looking forward to having an awesome 40th decade. This will be the decade we become parents, even if it's not how we originally imagined. This will be the decade he really busts it at work and accomplishes his dreams. This is the decade of becoming the man he wanted to be. I'm not just making this stuff up, it's an admirable plan and looking forward that I respect very much. I could not love this man more.

It feels kind of low-key this week, though, because the party isn't until April (possibly due to some lapse in planning earlier on my part, possibly due to Bryce also not being sure he wanted a party at first). That's the big celebration and I am super excited (and hush hush) on the details. It's a classic cocktail party. Classy, dressy, and fun. Just a great celebration of a wonderful man in the best of times (minus that one thing). Wednesday I am cooking him a fancy dry-aged ribeye steak, roasted potatoes, and swiss chard with blood orange olive oil (ooh la la). I am sharing a bottle of wine with him despite Egg Boot Camp, because dammit, your husband only turns 40 once and I have been SO GOOD. Just one mini margarita each Friday and that's it. (Ok, fine, last week I had two mini margaritas because I knew it was my last one). We made a completely delicious chicken pot pie that originates in a restaurant near his Mom's in Maine tonight, and so I think all my working out is going down the tubes this week in honor of the big birthday, but that's ok. It will be a lovely week of private celebration, and then we'll have the party.

And I won't be able to have any of the cocktails at the classy party (I am so going to make them create a delicious mocktail for me) because, of course, my retrieval is scheduled for the week right after. As in the party is 4/12, and retrieval is during the week of 4/14. I start stims 4/4 on the plan, which I will write more about later as I am having major anxiety about it all and the details were a bit of a shock to my system. I have historically gone around 11-12 days stimming, so retrieval will probably be mid-to-end-of-the-week. I'll probably be pretty uncomfortable at the party, but not terrible. OH GOD, I WILL LOOK SO BLOATED IN PICTURES! Not a big deal. Not my party, Bryce's party, and if I look pudgy and bloated so be it. Hopefully it just leads to more pudge and bloat and then a cute baby bump should I be so lucky. I welcome the bloat. Sort of. So, no imbibing. But I will be ok to run the party and organize everything and make it fun.

Happy Birthday Week to my fabulous husband, for whom I eat from-scratch GF chicken pot pie at 9:00 on a Monday, for whom I drink wine during Egg Boot Camp...and to whom I owe a gazillion happy moments. May this birthday be the last one that we're childless for. May this birthday be a celebration of the man you are, and the man you are yet to be. May you feel loved and celebrated. And may you know that I believe that you will be the best father a girl could ask for her children, no matter how all this shakes out. There's so much love in this house, it might explode if we don't have some little people enter it soon to start absorbing all we've got to give!

Bryce, doing the wine thing on our anniversary in 2012.

Contemplating either a new woodworking project or a new grilling challenge at his
propane-burner grill station he designed and built outside his garage
workshop. Note the ever-present wine, pretty sure that's a Riesling.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Integrin Results Are In

Okie doke, so that torture test came back, and I DO HAVE the beta-3 integrin. In fact, I have a robust supply. So, check that off the list of our issues. Apparently I have the glue that makes implantation happen, and I can once and for all say NOTHING IS WRONG WITH MY UTERUS.

Nothing major, anyway. The pathology report for the Test from Hell showed evidence of polypoid tissue. WHAT THE EFF? Why must my uterus keep making little friends to keep it company that don't exactly make for the best conditions for a lasting friend? One who will stay for 40 weeks? I don't get it. Plus, none of these little buggers ever shows up on an HSG or a saline sonohysterogram. The only way to see them is through this lovely scraping all around my uterus or a hysteroscopy.

And so, it has been decided that instead of having a scratch biopsy prior to my next transfer, I will yet again have a hysteroscopy to check out my uterus from the inside and get rid of the offending polypy tissue. And, while I'm (blissfully) out cold, my doctor will use this new microtechnology thingamajig to take the thinnest shavings off my lining which will both prepare it for transfer and get rid of any little baby polyps that may make little baby people harder to snuggle in. Pretty interesting stuff. The thing that sucks is that I have to go to Buffalo for this, since my doctor is not affiliated with Rochester hospitals anymore, and I don't know what that looks like. I have had great experiences at the ambulatory surgical center here, and I think I will be in a normal hospital there, which I do not enjoy. However, it won't be a hospital where I have memories of going in for surgery to remove my already-bleeding tubal pregnancy, so that's a bonus. I hate going to that place, even to visit others. The people there were wonderful but the experience was fairly traumatic.

The results of this test were supposed to set the calendar for my Go Time. I am still waiting a little, because apparently there's so much to consider even though now I don't have to do the Lupron Depot for two months, because my body DID SOMETHING RIGHT FOR ONCE. Do we still uncouple retrieval and transfer? I like the idea, because your poor body rests after ovulation induction and surgical retrieval of the eggs, and my body usually likes to try to hyperstimulate during that process. That's got to be good. But I worry because frozens typically have lower success rates than fresh cycles. Although, at the Buffalo clinic, their frozens aren't too far behind their fresh because their lab ROCKS. Plus, as my doctor said, you're not freezing the B-team, you're freezing everything including the A-team that usually would be transferred fresh, so the embryos should be pretty freaking healthy. Should be.

If we do uncouple, then I don't have to have the hysteroscopy until the month after retrieval, because it has to be in the luteal phase of the cycle before the transfer. But, if my lining looks awesome at retrieval they may want to do the transfer while the oven's hot, and if I haven't had the hysteroscopy then I'm not at ideal uterine tuning. Sigh. WHY CAN'T I JUST HAVE HOT SEX AND GET PREGNANT? Why must it be this weird science operation where it feels like it must be a full moon and lightning must hit the table just so?

So, our case is going before the team in Buffalo tomorrow and I'll get a better answer on this then. I could start stimming soon, which is awesome and terrifying. I will be glad to get that behind me, hopefully forever. Still amazes me that until November, I was sure that I would never stim again. How amazing, and how convoluted. I will be going through anesthesia twice in a matter of two months, which seems like a lot, but it's twilight for retrieval so not quite as much as the hysteroscopy. I guess I will truly do anything to get a baby to bake in that flubby little tummy of mine.

The other thing the positive test results did was make it clear that if it's not my uterine environment, then it really is likely a sperm issue. Which meant mixed feelings. In a way, if it was negative, then we'd have another possibility for the reasons for our failure. But now...what does that mean? I still stand by the fact that with a new lab and a new procedure for just about everything it is so important to give Bryce's guys another go before we do the donor. We'll split the cycle and hope they can split the vial, but go figure, usually they are not packaged to make that possible. It's worth it to me to have to buy another vial if needed to give us the best shot at the possibility of everything--a child genetically both of ours, carried by me. Even if it is a long shot. A little terrifying, but with everything we've done so far and the package with frozens and two fresh cycles included, it's not so much of a risk. If it doesn't work out then we know for sure. It just sucks that we have to play with these variables that are inextricably linked to so much emotion and hurt and loss. What's one more experiment?

What do you think about this whole uncoupling thing? Have you heard of doing this? Have you done it? What are your thoughts? I want to do whatever will give us the best chance. I want to get started. I am starting to get antsy and a bit anxious, and having a calendar in my hands will do so much to ease my jitters. Thanks for your feedback, I appreciate it!