85% of couples conceive in the first year, I am not one of them

Archive for April, 2012

Go time

Our meeting with the doctor is today. We get the all important SA results and my blood test results.

I kept asking my husband if he was mentally prepared for anything the doctor would tell him. He kept saying yes, but I could tell that he was only saying that because he truly believes he is flawless. I know in his mind he thinks his sperm is perfect and I’m getting my panties in a knot over nothing. I know there’s a chance that might not be the case, and he’s going to come crashing down. I asked him if he was willing to do “whatever it takes” to have a child. He got a bit annoyed at this question, saying I make it sound like I’m asking him to chop fingers off or donate a kidney. I don’t think he fully grasps the gravity of this situation. In a few hours we might learn there’s something seriously wrong with his sperm. We might learn he has NO sperm. We might not. I like having myself mentally prepared for bad news so I try to have him do the same. I wonder what he’ll do if he learns his sperm is super high quality. What an ego boost, lol.

At any rate, I’m lucky to have my husband being supportive through all this. He understands we need help and is making sure to do whatever I ask.  I read horror stories of other husbands who refuse to go to a doctor, while keep saying they just need to keep trying, and refuse to believe anything could possibly be wrong with them. Immature men if you ask me. My man is very squeamish and hates doctors, needles, being prodded, etc so just being willing to go through with this is a testament to his commitment to me and our family.

I somehow already know what’s in store for us. I feel like we’re going to be told his sperm is low, but not dangerously so, and that my blood test, save for the factor V, was normal. That they really have no idea why it should be taking so long. That is basically the story of my life. “We don’t know”. I don’t like “We don’t know”, where’s the science in that? It seems like a simple process of elimination. If my blood test shows my egg reserves are good, then we know it’s not a problem of sperm + egg = fail. My tubes are clear, so we know it’s not a problem of the egg being blocked. If his sperm is good, then we know it’s not a problem of sperm being able to get to the egg and fertilize it, if given a straight path. That would indicate to me that either my cervix and the mucus it contains is presenting too much of a challenge for a high enough amount of sperm to pass, or that my lining is not allowing an egg to stick and grow. IUI would be a good choice for the first problem. I really don’t know what to do about the second. I don’t understand if that can even be a problem. The lining is there, are there really different lining qualities?

Just some thoughts. Of course I need to practice what I preach and stop assuming I’m perfect. We could get my blood test results and show that my eggs are garbage. Wouldn’t make any sense but hey, that’s life right? Ugh, 1:15 can’t come fast enough. I need some news. I want good news.

The top of the mountain is here

I had my HSG today. You know, the one I’ve been dreading since I first started this blog? I don’t find myself truly scared often, but this HSG has had me completely frightened.

My journey started yesterday at Walgreens trying to fill my Z-pak antibiotic prescription. Turns out the nurse that wrote my script didn’t sign it. Opps. They would call  my doctor in the morning and I’d have to come back. I came back this morning to find out that my doctor’s office sent them to the dreaded nurse line answering machine. I don’t think I’m ever getting my antibiotics. Whatever, I’m a beast.

So I came back home, bathed myself, popped an aleve and vicodin, and set off for my doctor’s office. First part of the process is taking a pregnancy test at the office. Considering I haven’t even ovulated yet I wish they could take my word for it but alas, pee in a cup for everyone! Let me just say this bathroom was outrageous. There was like a plush chair facing the toilet,why? Who’s going to be in there with me? Nice pictures on the wall, air freshener, dimly lit. Nicest hospital bathroom ever.

Yep, not pregnant. Now I get to navigate the maze of the hospital to radiology. My doctor’s office probably got tired of ladies asking for directions and were prepared with a print out of the correct route. I still got lost, but showed up on time. At radiology I was fitted with a hospital bracelet and sat in a waiting room watching CNN for 15 minutes. I had absolutely no cell signal, like they were blocking it. Grrr, I wanted to read comics.

Eventually my name was called by an older nurse, who was very pleasant and chatted it up with me. I was lead to a huge room with a bathroom, a large table with a hovering xray machine, a cart with a monitor on it, and several chairs. I was told to undress from the bottom down and put on 2 hospital gowns, one on front and one on back. The room was comfortably warm, which was nice. I debated keeping on my electric green and black stripped mitten socks. Mmmmm no. Barefoot it is.

At this point my heart was in my throat. I was so nervous and it was making me nauseous. The smell in the room didn’t help, all those chemicals, ick. I came out, sat in a chair, and waited. The nurse came back and told me I could put my socks on if I wanted to. She also told me how much she liked my doctor, how kind she was. I asked her if other women had the same opinion after the procedure was done. “Is she gentle?” I asked. “I’m not going to lie, it gets a little crampy, she tries to make it as good as she can, she hates having to do this to you girls”.  I decided to put my socks back on. Looking in the mirror I told myself that I was strong and I could do this.

My doctor popped her energetic head in the room and greeted me warmly. She asked me to hop up on the table and commented on my socks. She actually remembered that I wore toe socks for my last appointment! Then she got really serious for a second. “This is going to sound crazy, or maybe it’s not crazy but I’m a crazy doctor…” Oh crap, what could this be about. “I got your blood test results, and I totally don’t remember asking for Factor V Leiden but it was on there…” Yeah I actually put that on there. My dad had it and said I should get tested so I was kinda sneaky sneaky. “Oh no it’s fine that you were sneaky sneaky it works out because it came back positive!” Yeah I kind of figured that, it’s not really a big deal right? “Yeah I think you have only one copy of it and it just means you can’t be on birth control….ever…again. Oh and when you get pregnant you’ll probably have to take blood thinners as a precautionary”. I figured as much. My dad found out he had it when he had his hip replaced. It’s basically a blood clotting disorder, one of many out there. For a young healthy woman like myself, it really doesn’t mean much. It’s only when I combine my genetic predisposition for getting blood clots with other medications or situations that cause clotting does a problem arise. I think of FVL as a multiplication symbol. Hormonal birth control carries a risk of blood clots for everyone. Multiply that with FVL and you have an increased risk of dangerous clots. So I can’t take it ever again. Not that I would, obviously. Also I shouldn’t smoke, which I don’t. Yep, besides carrying a miscarriage risk FVL means very little to me. It’s just good to know about.

It was crunch time now. All the fear of the past 2 months filled me as I was told to lay back and get ready. She put the speculum in, which felt a little pinchy and uncomfortable. She seems to not ease things in, it’s like BAM speculum all up in your business. I have a tight vagina so that’s probably why it felt pinchy. She ratcheted the speculum open and my arms were positioned at my side. Oh god. It’s happening. I was told to take deep breaths, so I did. I gasped for breaths heavily, waiting to feel the pain of the catheter on my cervix. And I waited. And waited. She kept telling me to take deep breaths so I did. I watched the screen with eagle eyes, catching a glimpse of my insides. Then… I saw dye flowing about and immediately though WHAT?

“You’re already injecting dye?” Yep.

Where was the catheter pain? Where was the dye pain? I was laying there on the table just waiting for pain that never came. I watched the dye fill up my uterus and flow out one side. “I think I see it coming out one side!” I said excitedly. Yep…and here comes the other side, finally! Your tubes are clear, yay! “Awesome!” I said. She instructed the nurse to take pictures. I wasn’t told to shift at all, I was flat the entire time. Once a few pictures had been snapped I heard “all done” and she pulled everything out. Out came a flow of gross yellow tinged oily dye onto the table with it. “Your all set, here’s a pad, feel free to wipe up and get changed.”

Really….that’s it? Are you serious. ARE YOU SERIOUS? I asked. Yep, I was all done. I wiped up, got changed, and came back out. My doctor bid me farewell and told me I’d see her Monday. That was it. My dreaded HSG was over. It didn’t hurt! My periods cramps hurt worse. My ovulation pain hurts more. My 2 weeks of costochondritis hurt WAY WORSE. I feel kind of silly for stressing about it for so long. The 2 months of stressing was far worse then the 3 minutes of HSG. Ugh.

Please take it from me ladies. The internet is full of pussies. The pain of an HSG will vary woman to woman but there’s a very, very good chance your HSG will not be that painful. Don’t stress about it, it’s not worth stressing over, and the feeling of being told “your tubes are clear” is soooooo worth it.

Monday is the top of the mountain. I get results of my blood test and my husband’s SA. We get to take the next step after that. I’m so excited. For the first time in a while I’m getting the spark of “I could be a mom” back. I’m scared that the results will be bad, but even if she says “we need to go straight to IVF” that’s a GOOD thing in my eyes. It’s an answer. It’s a solution. It’s moving me closer to being a mom. I’m also scared the results will be good, but hey, if everything is good maybe we do IUI. Either way, we get some much needed answers. Here’s hoping the top of the mountain is awesome.

EDIT: It’s now later at night and I have noticeable cramps. It feels like straight up CD 1 cramps. Minor bleeding but that’s to be expected. My lining is good to go by O day and of course shooting dye in there is going to knock some of it loose. I wonder why it took so long to start cramping? I know the Aleve is just now almost gone from my system, but the Vicodin was to wear off 6 hours ago. Maybe my uterus was sleeping. It totally just woke up and was like oh shit I’m full of stuff that doesn’t belong here, better get rid of that.

My OPK went positive tonight, I’m going to ovulate tomorrow, one day early. I decided that unfortunately I’m going to have to sit this month out. My first month in a year that we won’t be trying. I was told to abstain from disturbing my cervix with intercourse, douches, tampons, anything really for 48 hours. That plus my lack of precautionary antibiotics means it would just be reckless of me to try. I don’t want to get an infection or damage things. Plus I’m sure the mixture of blood and dye isn’t exactly sperm paradise. Oh well. The HSG halo of added fertility is said to stick around for a few months. Being the dye didn’t immediately clear my left tube it could have been somewhat clogged, which is now fixed. I’m really excited for next month.

Meh

It turns out my trampled feeling was my first ever bout of costochondritis. It’s basically a random inflammation of my rib cage cartilage with no real cure except “here’s some Vicodin, wait it out”. It’s been much more manageable lately, the pain has subsided to a bruised feeling instead of a hot stabbing. That however lead to random popping and crunching, especially when I breathe. Not painful, just incredibly odd and not comfortable. I guess maybe that’s part of the healing phase? Something gets inflamed and swollen, then it has to contract back to normal size? I have no idea. I could never be a doctor. I’m just happy I don’t feel incredibly terrible and can finally sleep through the night almost 2 weeks after it’s onset, albeit at a 45 degree angle.

So I did in fact get AF as expected. She was supposed to show Sunday but I just spotted. Monday was the real deal though. I decided to go get my blood work done today, which I have to do on day 2, 3, or 4. I’m pretty good with needles so I was very nonchalant about the whole thing. I really didn’t feel a thing! I looked away when he put the needle in and was like…wait, is that it? Then I just watched him fill 7 or so vials with my blood. Fascinating. Of course, my vein was sticking straight up and easy to find, that may have contributed to the lack of any pain. I may have snuck a check in front of a test on there that my doctor didn’t ask for. Factor V Leiden, a blood clotting disorder. My father had his hips replaced and was told he has it. I guess it really doesn’t do a whole lot if you aren’t old, don’t smoke, and aren’t on hormonal birth control. If you are it simply raises your risk factor for blood clots. It’s a good thing to know if you have it and are pregnant because it can contribute to early miscarriages. If it comes back positive I’m just going to give myself a pat on the back for being a sneaky little thing. I would have filled the entire sheet with check marks if I could. I’ll be excited to know my blood type more than anything, I get that answered right?

As for the SA results, they are being held hostage. I did get a call back….from a blocked number. I didn’t answer because really, who answers blocked numbers?  It turned out to be someone who sounded like they work from home because there were kids whining in the background. I was told the results were not in (how?) and that I still needed to get my blood work and HSG done and THEN my doctor would meet with me to discuss everything. ::rolls eyes::

I get it but come on, I’d rather not have to wait any longer for answers. If the sperm is really bad why even bother with the rest of the work up?  Whatever. Day 12 falls on next Friday, I expect to get my HSG done on that day though I haven’t called to schedule. At least from my costochondritis I have a Vicodin prescription, that should help with an HSG!

Ugh, come on with it already

I worked up the courage to call in for test results…

“Hello this is (doctors office)”

“Hi I’m calling in to see if my test results are ready?”

“One moment”

Transferred to a recording

“Hello, this is the nurses station. Please leave your name, spell your last name, and phone number and we’ll get back to you” BEEP

 

This is crap! Nurses station? WTF is that about? I left my information. I’m never getting a call back, am I?

FML

Pain

I keep waking up in pain lately. It feels like I’ve been trampled by a horse, my left ribs up to my arm pit is just on fire and sharp. It started last week and lasted a few days, then I found a sleep position where I didn’t hurt. When I fell asleep in that position my pain finally went away. It’s been gone for 3 days now and I’ve been sleeping normally….except last night. I awake at 3:45 AM and the pain is back. I contort for a half hour until I find something comfortable and fall back asleep. The pain isn’t totally gone but it’s not as bad as it was when it awoke me. I need to know WTF this is about. I’ve never had this pain before where laying down HURTS. This is one more problem I just don’t need and don’t have the money to investigate. What are they going to do anyway? Prescribe me some meds and tell me to go away? That isn’t what I want.

I tend to get a lot of one off weird ass symptoms before AF comes, then I never see them again. Once I was having UTI symptoms before AF and they totally cleared up once she came. Once I was having a problem where I needed to pee every few hours and again, it cleared up with AF. Somehow I bet this will clear up with her too.

Oh, and she will come. It’s 10 DPO test day and big surprise, I got another negative. I literally did not get my hopes up and was not let down. I guess that means I have to have the dreaded HSG after all. Ughhhh! I can have it from CD 6-12. I’m going to go with 11 or 12, the closer to my O date the better right? I figure my cervix will be more open then say day 6-10.

Still waiting for SA results. I know they’re done. I know they’re sitting there in my doctor’s file, she just hasn’t called me. I’m starting to get a little angry at her. I know I’ve only met her once, but if you refer to my first post about her, my initial impressions were less then stellar. Coupled with making me wait for crucial results…nuh uh, not happening. I know she seems to be the busiest doctor there, but call me selfish, I don’t care. I don’t care if you have hundreds of  patients, you need to make me feel like I’m your only one. I never reach out to people and try to fly under the radar and prefer not interacting much, doctors are one of the few people that I WANT attention from. I plan on calling tomorrow if I don’t hear anything, the people at the front desk looked at me funny when I asked how long it would take, as if it’s odd to wait more then a day or 2. They told me to definitely call if I haven’t heard anything in a week. I shouldn’t have to call my doctor for results….you need to call me.

My mental state is just so crappy right now. I know I’m getting AF, my body hurts worse then it ever has, I know I’m going to have to have an HSG, I want SA results NOW, I just want to shut down and escape. How can one feel both empty and so full of pressure they’re about to burst? I don’t know, but I’m feeling it.

It’s not funny…

A semi close friend with one child posted on her Facebook this morning “guess who’s expecting!” My heart sank. This girl was the first of my real group to start the baby fever epidemic. Her husband in the only stroke of intelligence I’ve ever seen him use said NO to having another child at the moment. He suggested waiting until the end of summer….since last summer. I’m using them as a bench mark, I NEED to be pregnant before them.

Oh “haha” it’s just a hack because she left her facebook open, she’s not really expecting.

It’s not funny…

SA Hey Day

We finally submitted an SA sample. YAHOO! Like I said before, any news is good news, even if it’s bad news. I’m completely on the edge of my seat until we finally get the news.

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