Welcome to the journey (I totally had “Welcome to the Jungle” by Guns N Roses playing in my head while typing that one out..)

Hi there.
I have been contemplating creating one of these guys for quite some time now and failed to do so because each month that would pass on by I would secretly say to myself, “I don’t think I am going to need a blog about infertility because I am going to beat it!” and each month would pass leaving me a little more and more sad and eventually I had to convince myself that even if I do fall pregnant, infertility is an issue that isn’t talked about in the world like it should be. It’s a disease that many people fail to acknowledge and a lot of the time is just pushed under the rug because it’s not life threatening (though there are days where we feel like our lives are over with, seriously) and a lot of the time we do not get our happy ending. I am not going to sit here and say this blog is going to be butterflies and rainbows because most days I feel completely exhausted, helpless, and terrified of what is next…but I am doing this to raise awareness and to give people an inside look as to what infertility feels like, so hang on, you are in for quite the ride.

I’ll start us off by saying that I am a 26 year old crazy cat lady who was diagnosed with PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome) when I was just fifteen years old. I started noticing my periods were getting extremely rare and even when I did get one it wasn’t a “normal” cycle. I waited a good six months to say anything because I just figured it was something that a lot of teenage girls went through. When I went to the OBGYN and got some tests done I had a meeting set up with a couple doctors where they sat me down and tried explaining I had something called PCOS. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t scared to death to hear those words for two reasons.
1. I had no idea what the heck PCOS was.
2. I took the information in as something was WRONG with me and I had no control over it. Not having control is a huge deal to me. I hardly drink for that reason alone… I am a one drink wonder and that’s okay by me! Let’s continue because now all I am craving is a sweet glass of red raspberry wine…my favorite!

The doctors proceeded to say I had insulin resistance and would have to be put on a medication called Metformin. They told me it would help with my insulin levels but there would be other symptoms that could have break outs such as facial hair, acne, anxiety, depression, and tiredness all of the time. I was the lucky duck and got all of above listed symptoms, but I felt as if they didn’t start getting severe until I reached my early twenties. I didn’t take my diagnosis very seriously for quite some time because I was young and didn’t realize how serious it was and how much if would effect me later in life. I stopped taking my medication because the side effects were unbearable. It got to the point where I couldn’t eat ANYTHING with out getting the worst stomach pains of my life. I tried taking care of everything on my own. You’d be surprised how quickly weight can gather on some one with PCOS, though. I gained 80 pounds in a little over a year because along with facial hair, depression, anxiety, and acne….a great dose of easy weight gain is another symptom of PCOS. Lovely, I know. As ironic as it is however, the most common symptom of PCOS is cysts on the ovaries and believe it or not, that is the only symptom I have yet to get. (knocks on wood) I get checked every month to see if any have appeared, but fortunately, the doctors have yet to see one. I count my stars when I can trust me, so for that I feel blessed.

Hearing the words “You may never have children, or at least it will more then likely be very difficult for you” felt like some one punched me as hard as they could in the stomach. I may have been young, but even then I knew one of the things I wanted to be was a mother when I got older. Matter of fact, in elementary school we had a day dedicated to write our story of what kind of job we wanted when we grew up and I remember creating a story about being a wife and mom and having lots and lots of animals. (and I mean lots like 5 cats, 10 dogs, three horses…a random goat. The whole ordeal) It’s funny how we have dreams like that so early on. I also remember not getting a good grade because it wasn’t a profession, and for that I want to laugh at the teacher who didn’t approve of my dream! Being a mom and dad are the best (and from what people have told me toughest but yet rewarding) jobs to have! Psh, got to love fourth grade.

Let’s fast forward to present time now. I am married to an awesome guy who I have been with for 12 years, (high school sweethearts still exist!) and we live in a little house that reminds me of a gingerbread home. We also have three cats, and if my husband Joe wouldn’t kill me we’d probably have seven. Oh right, we have also been trying for a baby for about a year now. I get the look of “that’s it?” pretty often and am used to whispers of how “normal couples” can take that long all the time. Our story is a little different however because I do not ovulate on my own. There is no “let’s see if this month works!” or random spur of the moment relations and wondering if I am pregnant. Every little thing is timed. I mean Every. Little. Thing.

After months of trying on our own for a baby with no success we decided to see a doctor in October of 2014. I got back on my Metformin (the side effects were even worse then I remembered!) and though that was causing me to get my monthly again, we later found out it still wasn’t aiding me in ovulating. We looked up an actual Fertility specialist in December and have been seeing them ever since. Two IUI’s (artificial insemination), two rounds of Clomid with a trigger shot, and lots and lots of tears, we have yet to get a BFP. Some days I am hopeful, and some days I am not. I take everything with stride and am lucky to have the support system I do. In the very beginning of this journey I felt so alone, like no one had any idea what I was going through. I later learned after joining some support groups and talking to people about it, I’m not alone. Even if some one isn’t going through the exact same thing I am it doesn’t mean I don’t have support and hope. It’s so easy to get stuck in a negative rut and think to myself how being a mom may never happen for me. I try not to focus so much on that because what good will that do? People don’t accomplish things by sitting and worrying all day, they get things done by going out and trying. That’s what I am doing…I am trying. I’m trying to live each day with faith. I am trying to better my health to get my body ready for a baby. I am trying to let people give me advice with out wanting to immediately defend myself against what they are saying. I am just trying to simply be. This is my journey, and I am no where near ready for it to be the end. I look forward to keeping you updated through my experiences and if you want to share your stories with me feel free to comment below or email me at msrachelandrew@gmail.com. It’s always nice to share our life events and learn from one another. Thanks for listening and until next time.

– Rachel

The lucky day brought me a second chance and some memories

March 2nd would have been my due date. It’s always difficult for me to sit here and think where I would be right now. I’d have a two week old infant who would be laying on my chest and I know I’d be kissing their head and sniffing them because c,mon…new born smell? The BEST. I’d probably be dog tired and extremely moody to my husband because the lack of sleep and how my nipples would be killing me from breast feeding. I would be trying to figure my whole new life out. I would be teaching my Chocolate Lab how to understand that they aren’t the only child anymore and mommy needs to bond with the baby, too. I would be doing all of this plus crying with happiness knowing I have a little miracle in front of me who gets to see my face and know that they are the love of my life and I will spend the rest of my life protecting, supporting, guiding, and loving them.
Instead, I sit in silence. I sit and wonder what Emery’s face would have looked like. Would they of had their dad’s beautiful bright eyes? How about my super round baby cheeks? Would they grow up loving books, theater, science, and space? Or would they enjoy playing sports? Or how about all of it…or none? These are the questions that get stuck in my head time to time. The time I spent pregnant with my little one will always be the best time of my life thus far.

On a different and happier note, we took yesterday as our lucky sign to call the doctors and schedule a consultation for our next IVF. I probably wouldn’t be having another procedure done until around January, but I want to know what kind of testing I am looking at, how much weight I should lose before then, and what they can do to help me not have another ectopic pregnancy. I am beyond excited and nervous about this upcoming meeting. We scheduled it for April 7th and I am counting down the days.

As much as I want my next IVF to work and as much as I want to be able to hold my child, I will always know that the first time I became a mom was when I found out IVF worked the first time and it gave us Emery. No matter how much time goes by, a mother never forgets.

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No where to go but up.

I posted a video below of what has been going on while I have been gone. It looks like a lot of the people I was following ended up having their miracle baby! I am so happy for those of you who ended up beating infertility! This journey is TOUGH!
Is there any one currently still TTC, getting ready for IVF/IUI, or taking some time off to relax a bit?

I believe Joe and I will schedule an appointment with some new doctors in April to see where we stand when it comes to IVF. I know I am going to have to lose more weight and my goal for next January is 40 lbs. I think it’s pretty doable. If I lose more that would be fantastic! I am so ready to be a mom. After the ectopic pregnancy I felt like I would never want to try again, but Emery gave me so much hope. I have hope now that I can carry a baby. That’s all I need to keep going.

I am excited to read up on all of your posts!

I’m back. Are you still here?

Hi all. I’ve been gone for almost a year. Holy smokes. So much has happened since then and I promise I will be making a video and explain everything. I’m not going to lie, it hasn’t been rainbows and butterflies, but you all deserve an update on my disappearance! If you are still here give me a comment and feel free to give an update on where you are in your journey if you’d like! I can’t wait to start this thing up again. I’ve missed this blog, I’ve missed typing all of my feelings out and having support, and I’ve missed you all! I hope you all are still blogging and to my new followers, welcome! I promise not to just drop out again. 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

Long time no talk.

Hi all!
It has been a very quiet past couple months. My husband and I decided to take a break from all of the fertility drugs until January. I had a bad reaction to my last dose of clomid and sadly, we thought we conceived last month with how emotional I was, back pains, and nausea, only to find out it was a big fat negative,

It’s hard because I am at the age where all of my friends are talking about starting their families and getting baby fever. I’ve been feeling rather selfish and sad watching them become pregnant and hearing them discuss names, themes for a nursery, what sex they are hoping to have(I’ll take anything!), etc. I think to myself “I’ve been ready for two years!” but what can any one do? It’s no one’s fault I am having difficulties. I have to smile and try to hide my pity parties the best I can.

I am down 38 pounds from my heaviest and I plan on keep going! I saw a nutritionist and she was amazing with telling me what i should and should not be eating. Who would have thought Honey Nut Cheerios would be harmful to me and eating half of an avocado a day is recommended? Not me. it’s hard getting in a new healthy routine but I am determined. I want to be at least 10 pounds lighter by Christmas. 2 pounds a week…totally achievable!

I hope you all are doing marvelous and had a Happy Halloween!

I’m craving away.

I have started eating better! I have decided to really stick to making myself healthy this time. In 12 days I have lost 6 lbs and I am super excited about that. I just started walking my dog and really watching the in take of food. I am a huge sugar and bread addict! When I was a kid I would literally eat at least 3-4 pieces of bread and butter with my meal. It makes me mad my mom never tried to guide me the right way sometimes because I often wonder if I would have such intense cravings if I wasn’t allowed to eat the way I did when I was little. -shrugs-

I found some PCOS healthy snacks that me and Joe are going to make up as well. He has been super supportive and is willing to eat whatever I am eating so I am not drooling like a fool while he is eating a juicy steak and I am eating a grilled chicken salad. It’s awesome to have his support because I really think with out it I would have failed earlier on. Some one left a piece of chocolate peanut butter cake in the fridge and I swear all I could think about yesterday was eating it. I can’t wait until these cravings settle down. I see a nutritionist soon too! She will help me even more.

Hopefully it is all up from here!

Which way is up?

I haven’t posted in some weeks and my apologies! I definitely hit a dark period and I toooootally didn’t want to bring any one else down with me. That’s for sure!

This past weekend was a really tough one. Three of my let’s say five friends are either pregnant or trying and for some reason I found out about all of them within 24 hours. As happy as I am for them, I am so sad for me too. I try to put a smile on and discuss baby names and nursery themes and I tried really hard not to let it show it was just killing me inside.

I spent most of Saturday hating the world and drinking wine. I have to say, I usually don’t let myself get that sad, but man…it felt good to relax with some blackberry wine and watch “The Last Comic Standing” with my husband.  We even started our therapy sessions this past weekend and it went SO well. Therapy was recommended to us since our stress levels have been high with this whole baby journey. I see it definitely helping and they want to put me on something for my severe anxiety/depression and for once, I am not going to fight it. My life may be making a turn for the better on this stuff. It is worth a shot at the very least. If I hate it, there is nothing stopping me from discontinuing it.

Well, where are we on our magical infertile adventure? We decided that this month after taking Femara three times (I am just not responding to it sadly) not go with an IUI and just take a couple weeks trying naturally and hope I ovulate. I am starting Clomid again this month and am going to see if that leads me anywhere this time. Our IVF consultation left me with more questions then answers I feel. I believe we are going to attempt it in January if our future IUI’s don’t work until then.

My fears regarding IVF

1. I am always concerned with my lining. I can never seem to get it above a 6. I have had it as low as 4.
2. If our insurance doesn’t cover all of the meds.
3. If I have to pay the remaining balance up front.
4. If my eggs are simply just not good.
5. If they are only able to get one egg. (I wanted to freeze mine so it wouldn’t cost so much if I had to do a second IVF)
6. If this procedure doesn’t work.
7. if this procedure does work and I miscarry
8.  If by the end of this I simply am insane. Hah.

I am extremely lucky my IVF will be covered 75%. I have $10,000 for IVF and I have $4,000 for medications and have no clue how far that will get me. I know I am more then blessed with so many people having NOTHING and having to pay thousands and thousands of dollars, I guess I am just stressing because I am so new to this and am not sure how it is all going to work…or if it even will.

I hope you all are doing great and are having the best kind of Monday! Until next time.

Rach

Holding on to that 10.

My progesterone levels came back and it is a big ol 10. I was really hoping for at least a 14 like it should be, but honestly I am content with this number considering last month I got a level 3 and the month before that a level 7. My husband’s count was 16 mill after wash as well! (The highest yet!) I am feeling a little crampy, super tired, and extremely moody but here is hoping it is a baby! Has any one here had a low level progesterone and conceived?

I feel like people are already assuming I am pregnant(mostly family because they really do think it is going to happen soon…wish I had their positive attitude), which will make it that much harder when it comes out to be a negative again.

Here’s to Tuesday night when I test. I am hoping my belief in miracles come back.

A whole lot of “maybe’s”.

Things with Molly have been going great. She seems to be adjusting well to her new family! My one cat sadly despises her existence however. She will randomly attack the dog (yes, she has claws) and it is tough to break up and deal with all together. Any advice on that would be fantastic!

We had an ultra sound last night which ended up being better then I thought it would be. Three days ago I went in for a check up on my follicle growth and I only had a couple size 12 and 13 on my left side and I believe a size 15 on my right. I go in last night and they tell me I have one follicle size 19 on my right side. The bummer about this is it is my blocked side. I make a sarcastic comment as I see the little guy on the screen about how of course I would have a decent size follicle on the side that doesn’t work. The Dr looks at me confused and tells me it isn’t definite my right side is blocked since it could simply just look that way from a spasm during the HSG. He tells me unless I had an infection or an STD of some sort he doesn’t see why my by tube would be blocked… and I haven’t had either. I don’t personally see how a tube could only be blocked by those two circumstances, but I have to do more research in to that. I also think I remember the Dr who did my HSG saying there was a super thin opening in the tube none the less. So, we will see. I go in for my IUI Wednesday morning! Here’s hoping something happens and by some stroke of luck, this month is it! I think it would be so ironic if the month where we are really unsure about ends up being the month we get our blessing. Wishful thinking. 🙂