Dip Stick

Well the waiting was unbearable. I gave in on Monday and decided to go ahead and take a test early. I did the whole routine and peed in a cup, which I have become quite a professional at doing I must say… Then I dipped the stick and waited to see the NOT PREGNANT words appear. The stupid thing kept flashing and flashing…I thought for sure it was broken but finally words magically appeared… PREGNANT. I thought my eyes were screwing with me and I wasn’t reading it right. I went into the bedroom and woke Les up. She had worked the night before so she was quite startled by me shoving a pregnancy test in her face saying, “Oh My God read this for me… What does that say?” She rubs her eyes and puts her glasses on…. She looks at it and then looks back at me. “It says you’re Pregnant!” We kept looking at the stick like the words were going to change. The feeling of disbelief came over me. Sweet Lord…this can’t be true. I mean this is what we’ve been wanting and waiting for but REALLY?!?!? Is it really happening?!?!? I’m still in shock 3 days later. I would have never guessed that we would have been successful after our first at home insemination. We were both prepared for several more months of this process. I still can’t believe it. I’m so happy I feel like I could explode!

I’ve been dying to blog about it and let everyone who has been so supportive know our good news but Les wanted me to wait a little bit. She finally gave me the green light today to tell everyone. We have a doctors appointment for Tuesday for conformation But things are looking good. I’ve now taken 3 tests and have had 3 positives results. So I guess its time to let it sink in.

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We Did It

We Did It!!! I have to tell you that this was by far the most interesting experience. I’ll give you the run down of how it went…and I’m going to try really hard not to ramble!

So Thursday was the BIG day! We packed up what we would need for our quick stay at the hotel and left the house in separate cars. Les headed to check us into the hotel and set everything up for the insemination. I headed to our donors condo to pick up Jiz Cup #1. Yay!!! So I was supposed to pick it up at 3 and of course, for the first time in my life, I’m way too early. Like 30 mins too early. I was a nervous wreck! I drove around in circles until I couldn’t stand to wait anymore. I pulled into this complex at 2:45. I was shaking and my heart was racing! I called Les and said “I’m still early! I don’t want to rush him… it could cause him to have some kind of stage fright! What do I do?” She said “Goodness, calm down. Just send him a text. Its okay.” So I nervously sent him a text saying I was there and no rush just let me know when he was ready for me to get it. A few mins later I get a message from him saying it’s there. We had agreed that he would sit it on his porch in a bag when he was done. So I quickly make my way up the steps to grab the bag. (He had it in a MAC make-up bag, which told me his wife has good taste in make-up) I just knew that I was going to do something stupid like trip and fall on their front porch steps bc I was still a nervous wreck but thankfully I didn’t. I jump back in the car, put the cup between my legs to keep our little swimmers warm, and drive a quickly to our hotel…all of 2 miles away. I arrive to our room and handoff the cup. She had the room set up like we were about to do surgery….future doctor that she is. She gets the Jiz ready and I’m impatiently waiting for her to get this show on the road. All I could think was that our swimmers would be dying one by one if we didn’t hurry up and get them where they are supposed to be! So just like we had practiced…We used all of our fancy home insemination kit stuff and Les did the insemination perfectly. It went off without a hitch. It was surprisingly easy. Now that the swimmers were in, I propped pillows under my hips, put my legs up on the wall, and tried to relax. I know I must have looked ridiculous! The first twenty mins I felt fine then my legs started falling asleep. Then I started to feel like I needed to pee. Les wasn’t exactly sympathetic to how I was feeling… She reminded me I had to stay like that for at least another 20 mins. “We don’t want all of it to come back out! We need to keep them going in the right direction… come on you can do it. Just hang on a little longer.” So I did. I managed to stay that way for an hour! After a quick bathroom break I laid back down with my sweet wife to nap and stay relaxed…Day One was Done!

I didn’t sleep a wink Thursday night in the hotel by myself. Les was working just mins away and would be meeting our donor there in the hospital at 6:40 a.m. to pick up Jiz Cup #2. I was so jealous that she was going to get to meet him face to face! She agreed to meet him at work not knowing what to expect…would it be awkward? Would he act like he was handing her a bomb? Behind her she hears this happy voice say, “Good Morning”. She is slightly startled but turns around to see him smiling at her with the bag ready to hand to her. At first she thought he was shaking the bag at her to get her attention, but then noticed it was his whole arm shaking. Bless his heart! He must have been so nervous and totally freaked out! She says thank you. And he says, “Your welcome. See you later!” and is out of her sight in a split second. She calls me when she gets in the car and says, “Oh my God he is so cute and adorable! You can really tell he is a great guy!” Well that was just a HUGE relief! So she arrives at the hotel just a few mins after picking it up and I have everything set up this time. We feel like Pros doing it today. I should have had a stopwatch going to time how fast we were. Then like the day before I practically stood on my head afterwards, pillows piled under me and my legs on the wall. Lasted the full 45 mins and without a single complaint that time. When the time was up we laid down to get some much-needed sleep. We were both completely worn out! Slept a solid 5 hours and I don’t think I moved the whole time. We packed up and headed home so happy that it went so well and glad that we had officially broken our At Home Insemination Cherry! WooHoo!

Now the two-week wait begins.

~M

How in the Heck is this Gonna Work?

Well we are exactly a week away from the big day and we have no idea how this is going to work. We have half of a plan…but just the first half. We know that we have all the supplies we need to make this happen. We’ve done our homework on how to do this (the insemination) and do it right. We know that our donor is on board and is ready to donate Thursday and Friday but there’s a catch. He will be at the hospital all day both days. Now that means we will meet him really quickly to do the “hand-off”. The doctor said that we need to do the insemination pretty much right away…well how in the heck is this gonna work? We will be 30 mins away from our house!

I can’t believe I’m even writing about this…We’ve considered inseminating in the car because the actual insemination will only take 5 mins or 10 mins max. The long part is me having to lay down hips elevated for at least 20 mins. But really?!?! How insane is that? In a car? I watched a documentary on 20/20 a month or so ago of couples trying to get pregnant like us using known donors. One of the couples did inseminate in the car after picking up their swimmers. They did it right down the street in a parking lot or something. Its Karma coming back to get me because I laughed at the idea of them doing that. Well I don’t know if I can bring myself to do it. Sure we do have a Tahoe with practically blacked out windows with plenty of room for me to lay down comfortably but my goodness… Is it just me that thinks this sounds crazy?

We are so ready to be pregnant and start our family but I had no idea how hard it would be, especially doing it this way. When we decided to change to using a known donor we knew all the work that was going to be on our shoulders but just not how much. Yes, we have saved thousands of dollars by choosing to do it this way but we’ve added lots of stress. I know we’ll figure it out…

~M

Plan C

What a rollercoaster…this past week I have spent more time on the phone than a telemarketer. I think we have finally nailed down a plan and are ready to get going. Unfortunately we had to let go of the idea of being able to do IUI’s right now due to the fact that we aren’t able to get around the 6 month quarantine period. We were hoping that the one other fertility clinic in our area would be able to provide the services for us but it turns out that they are almost impossible to deal with. I’m pretty sure that the patient coordinator that I spoke with at least three times has a learning disability. I wonder if she can even tie her own shoes. She could not understand what I was wanting from her clinic. Its pretty simple… Our donor comes in and donates his swimmers. You collect it… do what you do with it… put into vials, store it…then you let me use those vials without having to wait 6 months. But she kept wanting to schedule an appointment for me and our donor with one of the doctors at their clinic even after telling her I had my own doctor and I just needed the collection and storage. I think it’s safe to assume that they must not deal with very many lesbian couples. I still don’t think she understands that I do not have a problem with fertility. “Listen lady, I do not have a fertility issue.. other than the fact that my wife does not produce sperm! Is that clear enough for you?” I finally just gave up. There was no point in getting all worked up about it…time to move on.

So our hope was squashed and we had no choice but to go with Plan C. Now Plan C was our least favorite plan because it involves us having to deal directly with the Jiz. Yep. We are now going to have to do same day Intracervical Inseminations. I was a nervous wreck when I sent the email to our donor asking him if he would be okay with doing same day inseminations. This change in plan means us having to do a hand-off of his swimmers at least two days in a row each month. Which means more of a time commitment for him. Our donor has a very time consuming job and I just didn’t know if this idea would fly with him. Because seriously, how convenient is it to be at work or wherever he may be and have to drop what he’s doing to go Jiz in a cup? I was totally preparing myself for a negative response considering that really wasn’t what he originally agreed to.

The wait was awful but luckily he replied to us that night saying that he was okay with the new plan. He said the same thing that Les and I said when we realized that we were going with PlanC, “The handoffs will be a little awkward but we can make it work.” It was so nice to know that we were on the same page. I don’t know how to put into words how much I appreciate him being willing to do this for us. This guy is willing to give us a gift that will change our lives forever. We can never say thank you enough.

So here I am…hopeful, antsy, excited, nervous, etc. all at the same time. We’re looking on the bright side of going to PlanC… using fresh swimmers will work to our advantage and we’ll be pregnant soon. I start my clomid today on day 4 of my cycle and will take it for 5 days…should ovulate and inseminate exactly 7 days later! Wow! We are 2 weeks away from starting the process. So much hard work! Please God let it pay off this time!

~M

Back to Back

Monday morning bright and early I woke up, took my daily ovulation test and just like the day before I had a faint positive. Les was reluctant for us to go in for the appointment without a for sure positive knowing that this is our last month to try. We arrive and they put us in our regular room. Our favorite 3rd Wheel enters the room to chat with us about events of the past month, the meds I took and ovulation symptoms. He said that he thinks we should go ahead with the insemination because even if the egg hasn’t popped out yet we know it will very soon and the little swimmers will be there waiting on it when it arrives.  Once I’m on the table there is the familiar knock at the door and he comes in with a new face in tow. This newbie was eager to help and watch. Ha! I swear I thought she was going to come over his back trying to see this procedure…obviously a first for her! All finished they left the room with me laying with my head down and the lights off so I could relax…we did our 20 mins then packed up to leave knowing we’d be back in less than 24 hours for our last try.

The next morning bright and earlier than the day before I drop Nathan off at school early and head up to Dr. Macey’s office to meet Les. She worked the night before so we planned to meet there. I asked her to go and pick up the vial for us at the storage office. Well, let me just say what a huge mistake that was! I receive a call from Anita as I’m pulling into the doctor’s office parking lot…Anita: “Hello Melissa. You didn’t tell me you were having someone pick up the vial for you.” Me: “Oh I’m sorry that’s my wife Leslie. She’s on my account paperwork.” Anita: “Well I’m sorry but you’re the one listed on the vial as the patient so legally I can only give it to you or someone else with written authorization.” Then she proceeds to tell me I could fax her an authorization…Ummm, Les just told you I’m in the car, lady!!  Well folks that did it. It sent Les over the edge.  Les was livid that Anita was rude and offensive. Not only was the policy itself offensive when my own wife couldn’t pick up the sperm to make OUR baby, but the lady looked at her like she had 3 heads when Les told her why she was there instead of me. So my only option was to turn around and go get it myself. Thank God I was only 5 mins away. Geez. I guess we’re lucky all Les did was barge out of the office yelling “This is just F-ing ridiculous!”

Once we were able to make it to the office we proceeded with the same routine as the day before. The newbie nurse from the day before was there trying to quietly explain (Her quite voice isn’t so quite bc I heard her loud and clear) to another new face what she needed to do to assist with our insemination. The knock at the door came and in comes our 3rd wheel with the new nurse. I said to him you just have all kinds of new nurses and introduce myself and Leslie to her. She tells us she wasn’t really new that she normally works on the other side of the office and she was just helping out today. I thought to myself yeah right…You know you’ve never seen this before and are dying to watch. Well either way it was fine with us. She seemed sweet and way friendlier than the newbie from the day before. We go through the whole routine again and all goes well again. When he’s all finished he talks to us for a minute, wishes us the best of luck and tells us how hopeful he is.

We make it home and I feel pretty worn out. I’m crampy and uncomfortable so I lay down to rest. I sleep most of the day and night, feeling guilty for not being up doing things around the house. I can’t explain how it feels other than it doesn’t feel good. I’m not sure if other people have the same experience as I do but for me it’s just not fun. Then after a day of rest Wed rolls around and I’m feeling 100% again. So we did it…back to back and gave it our best shot. Nothing we can do now but wait and hope for the best!

~M

Third Times a Charm???

I keep hearing the phrase “Third times a charm” when I tell people we’ll be trying again next week and I just wanted to know what in the heck it means. So I used Mr. Google and found the meaning and history of the phrase.

Meaning: The belief that the third time something is attempted is more likely to succeed than the previous two attempts. It is also used as a good luck charm – spoken just before trying something for the third time.

History: Beginning in the 19th century, the most common reason alludes to the belief that, under English law, anyone who survived three attempts at hanging would be set free.

So yes we are hoping to survive this time. Well not survive a hanging of course but hoping that we are successful with our baby-making process. We have our scheduled appointments for early Monday and Tuesday morning. Two days of back to back insemination… I’m not sure if I’ll be able to handle all the excitement. I know there is bound to be some craziness to tell so stay tuned…

~M

Meant to Be

I’m sorry that I have been absent and neglected to write for a while. I guess you could say that it was a tough weekend. I started not feeling well last Thursday and had to suffer through a 12 hour shift at work that night. While I was at work Les and I had a conversation on the phone she began to google all of my “symptoms” asking me dozens of questions about how I was feeling and if I had experienced this or that. By the end of it she had herself and pretty much me too that it was looking really good and I just had to be pregnant.

So she stops that morning on her way home from work and excitedly buys, one of the over priced tell you 6 days before your period, Preggers Tests. I open the test, dip the stick and then wait the whole 5 mins until its says it should be ready. I tried not to even look at the stick until it was time because if it was positive I wanted to be surprised. Well Times Up…and No…not Positive. Not even a hint of 2 lines. An absolute negative. I have to admit I was sad but I also thought that I may still have a chance because I hadn’t started my period yet and tests have been known to be wrong…. so I lay down to sleep that morning trying not to give up all hope.

When I woke up later in the day there it was…no more hope. I, the one who swore my hopes would not be up, sat in the bathroom with tears streaming down my face. I felt hopeless, heartbroken and totally deflated. I felt like I was letting Les down. Then I started to doubt myself and doubt my body, my fertility.

I knew that I had to tell Les and I knew that she would be sad too which didn’t make me feel any better considering she was so hopeful. I believe that this is just as much her process as it is mine and if she wants to be hopeful and excited she can be. And when I told her she was disappointed but she was sweet and felt bad that she had gotten my hopes up. (So take note: Don’t Google Everything) I just want to know what are we doing wrong? What could we do differently? We changed the timing up and took the clomid? It is just crazy how EVERYTHING has to line up just right in order for it to happen and regardless of how OCD I am not in control of all the ducks in the line. Frustrated and worried that it may not happen. We have one more try left and then we have to wait for a while. We’ll wait at least three months because if not and we ended up preggers then that would put us having a baby right in the middle of us moving next year. Another reason we have to wait is because we will need to save up more $money$ in order to start trying again. So another long wait if it doesn’t work with our 3rd and final try. No worries. No more pity party. I know if it is meant to be it will happen and if it doesn’t happen now it will eventually.

~M

Balloon Popped

Well my balloon popped but I wasn’t as upset as I thought I’d be because the timing may be alright. Sunday afternoon my ovulation test was positive which means that I will be ovulating 12 to 24 hours later. Which considering it’s been at least 12 hours since my positive test I would bet money that I’m ovulating right now if it hasn’t already happened.

With our last try we jump the gun and now this time we aren’t really sure we’ll even make it in time. Now do you see what I mean by the hurry up and wait??? The egg doesn’t live forever…and they suggest you inseminate and have the sperm there waiting on the egg. But maybe we’ll do it backwards…(trying to be positive) our egg wants to get to the party first and the sperm want to be fashionably late.

So here is our game plan. (Les is asleep already so she doesn’t even know our plan yet but I’ve got it all figured out!) In the morning we are dropping Nathan off at school… battle rush hour traffic to pick up a vial of our baby making juice and then driving straight to Dr. Macey’s office. Honestly, I want to be there when the doors open. I called after the positive result but of course the office was closed…it was Sunday. So I left a message for his nurse but I can’t possibly wait on her to call me back in the morning… what if she doesn’t check her messages til noon?!? Nope can’t risk it… we’re just going to show up unannounced and that way we can get worked into his schedule ASAP!

I’m so worried now…what if we’re too late? What if my egg is gone before our little swimmers get to it? Sweet Lord this is crazy…Wish us luck. Time to get some sleep…Big day tomorrow!

~ M

Hurry up and wait…

AHHHH! I am so over the waiting. This roller coaster of a process is all about hurry up and wait. Hurry up and wait. All of this is driving me crazy.

Well I took the Clomid and according to my favorite 3rd Wheel, Dr. Macey, I should ovulate 7 days after the last day Of taking it. So that day is right around the corner. Monday to be exact. Keeping our fingers crossed that we don’t ovulate on Sunday or this whole month is a wash! And that would just pop my balloon : (

I swear time is inching by…and it feels like it is forever away. Luckily I am working Fri & Sat night and Nathan has a soccer tournament Sat & Sun so maybe it will go by fast.

~M

To Take or Not to Take? That is the Question.

Moving forward in our little journey to have a baby we’ve decided that we could have done a few things better to increase our chances. Before our first insemination I had been charting my temps for months, then started using an ovulation kit almost a week after my period with the hopes of nailing down the exact day I ovulate. Well the day came, my temp spiked just little (by a little I mean from my base temp of 96.4 up to 96.9) and when the spike in temp happens, like our Doc said it would, that means you are ovulating. But I think we may have jumped the gun on that one and inseminated too soon…because the morning after we inseminated my temp was 97.2 and technically you ovulate about 24 hours after the spike and 97.2 is a true spike for me. So there is a good chance that we inseminated too early because we were so excited that we were ovulating and…. I have zero patience. BUT this time we are really going to be strategic about this insemination. We are watching my temps really closely and we aren’t going to do the insemination until I hit the 97 degree range.

So I called my doctor’s office to let the nurse know that we weren’t preggers since I had started my period this past weekend and that we would be soon scheduling another insemination and asked her to call in the prescription for Clomid that Dr. Macey had recommended I take. Now I know what some of you are thinking right away….oh that is the drug that makes you have multiple babies!!! Well that’s exactly what we thought about too. Les right away said “Oh No! We can not handle having more than one baby. Not going to happen. No mam.” And then I’m thinking…really I do just want ONE baby but who cares if its more than one??! Well My wife, thats who : )

So what do I do…. take it or not?

After debating it I started to look into the drug information and statistics so we could truly weigh out this whole thing. Now clomid received the multiples reputation when it was first being used but that is not exactly the norm. I’ve learned quite a bit about the drug while doing my own research and thought I would share just a couple of the interesting facts I learned about it.

“Clomid Description: Clomid (clomiphene citrate tablets USP) is an orally administered, nonsteroidal, ovulatory stimulant…” (http://www.drugs.com/pro/clomid.html)

Clomid therapy should not be administered for more than 3-6 months dependent upon many individual patient variables. Clomid studies have clearly demonstrated that pregnancy is most likely to occur during the first three months of therapy. There is little advantage to increasing the clomiphene dosage beyond that required to regulate        ovulation.” (http://www.infertilityspecialist.com/clomidft.html)

“Chances of Multiples on Clomid:  1 in 10 have Twins ______ 1 in 200 have triplets _______ 1 in 333 have Quads…” (http://www3.telus.net/tyee/multiples/3various.html )

So YES, I will be taking the Clomid. I made up my mind that I would rather take it and end up pregnant…. even if it is with more than one baby….. than not take it and end up not pregnant at all. I just feel like we need all the help we can get here.

~M

Dark Lines

I received my new Yoga 4 Fertility DVD and I was super excited to try it out. So I pop it in and am totally ready to learn something new. Actress Brenda Song is the instructor and creator of the routine… Apparently she had some trouble getting pregnant with her 2nd child and that is what inspired her to make this DVD. At times it was hard to stay focused because hearing her talk you through each pose kept reminding me watching Desperate Housewives years ago and hearing her narrate that show…just needed Eva next to me to make the experience more real.

I worked my way through the routine pretty easily. Only had one awkward part in the whole routine where she wanted you to do some kind of movement using your hands and groin. I took one look at that part and said “Oh hell no!” and skipped on to the next section. You can tell from the DVD that Brenda is a yoga champ and I must say that it was very relaxing and informative. Overall it was a good buy and I’d say if you like slow relaxing yoga then I’d recommend it. She seems to be a little weird but who am I to judge her, considering I’m writing a blog about trying to get pregnant and most of my posts have talked about Jiz.

Now moving onto more exciting news. I have to give shout out and a fist bump to my girl Brenda because it looks like I’m ovulating! Now I’m not saying I ovulated just because of her yoga routine. We all should know that there is a monthly timeline that my eggs abide by and they could care less if I do yoga with Brenda. But I do find it humorous that I did the routine then ovulate the next morning. And it is official… The pee-stick finally had 2 dark lines! Not just 1 dark one  OR  1 lite & 1 dark…NO mam…it had 2 dark lines! Can I just express how exciting it is to know that I didn’t run in the bed room & wake Les up for nothing this time! (*Side Note: Let us just say that my judgement of how dark a line is has not been the best and I have startled her several times. Ooops*) Well not today folks! This was it! Our first month tracking with the pee-sticks to see if I was ovulating and it happened! Wooo Hooo!

Now we’re off to see Dr. Macey in the morning, who will from now on he will be referred to as the 3rd Wheel in my blogs. We have lab work to do and a timeline to set up. It is a crazy feeling knowing that we are “so close but yet so far away”.

~M