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My First Pregnancy

On November 5, 2016 I saw my first positive pregnancy test. I was so nervous that we told very little people. Due to this being so unexplained I was very petrified it would end as quickly as it began. My MIL and Mother knew because of the calls made that day. The next day was my best friend’s son’s birthday party so I had to tell her. She cried and was so excited for us. Besides that I wasn’t telling anyone until after the first trimester. I was sick ALL THE TIME my first trimester. Not morning sickness, I had the flu, my entire first trimester. It was awful. Unable to take any medicine made for a very miserable 3 months. Thanksgiving I was very sick. No voice, sore throat, congestion, headaches, the works. I had that for around 2 weeks. I was OK for a little bit then got sick again shortly after Christmas and the worst of it hit New years night/day. I had the same symptoms as before but worse. My throat was so sore I only ate very cold/warm foods. I loved the sorbet Popsicle at Giant Eagle. They were so soothing. We announced on Christmas day, a little before the end of the first trimester. We thought it would be a great surprise to share it then. We told my stepdaughter first by giving her a shirt. We used that picture and a ultrasound to announce on Social media. The response was overwhelming. We received so many messages, comments, and text sending well wishes our way.

The first image is how I told my fathers side of the family at our family Christmas Eve party. The second image is the one that was posted on Social Media. Sorry, I’m not good at editing. I took video as much as I could during the pregnancy so I have video of when I told my step daughter and my Dad’s family. It was amazing. Overall, the first trimester wasn’t that bad. I was so unbelievably nervous and petrified. At the same time I tried to enjoy the fact that this was happening and that I was pregnant. Besides the flu, my morning sickness was just nausea…often without actually getting sick. I can’t complain too much about that.

My second trimester was a breeze. I wasn’t sick anymore. My friend let me use her at home Doppler and the beginning of the 2nd trimester was the first time I found her heart beat. That was such a wonderful reassurance to have. Knowing my babe was there. It was the best feeling ever. I started to show around 18 weeks. As they say, my belly just “popped out”. Around that same time is when I felt her kick for the first time. It was amazing. I think that she did kick sooner but I didn’t know what it was. It was such a faint flutter I know now but at the time I just thought it was gas or something in my gut. Silly, I was nervous for the scan at 20 weeks but all was well. I was very excited after our scan to find out all of her measurements were good. I did have to redo some of the measurements as well as redo my glucose test. I passed the 2nd time but it was not fun re-doing that test. I did have a few symptoms that made the 2nd trimester less fun. I developed insomnia. It was the worst. I was getting about 2 hours of sleep each night. There was also about a week where I developed sciatic pain. I remember one time specifically trying tie my shoes and I almost collapsed from the pain. I am so grateful that only lasted a week. The end of the 2nd trimester is when I finally bought maternity pants. I was buying shirts often but never pants for some reason. I just used a maternity band. Which was awful. It was fine at first but then my pants where just always falling down. The maternity pants didn’t fully fit my belly and they always fell down as well. I was happy for my third trimester to know my babe was almost here….and my pants would finally fit.

The third trimester. At first it was fine. It was just the 2nd trimester continued. Feeling good. My blood pressure and numbers were always good. My weight gain was fine and I was always measuring on time. The further I got into the trimester the harder it got. As I expected. I was told I was due July 17th. I always knew she was going to be early though. My back pain became very very difficult to bear. I would try to walk often and drank a lof of  water. Nothing really helped though. I just tried to rest and stretch as much as I could after I got home from work. Starting the beginning of June my feet and legs started to swell towards during work as well. Each week it got worse. I called my doctors’ office to verify what was happening was normal. They said it was but I went there to show them because I had the worst cankles I have ever had. When I got there they just told me it was normal and I need to elevate them, ice them, and drink water. I felt like “this can’t be normal”. It was. But I was in pain everyday and it became very overwhelming. It was and it was a pain I had never felt. My co-worker actually advocated for me to be able to work from home more often but it wasn’t allowed. I was very grateful someone spoke out for me. I felt that made it look less like me complaining and more like someone else noticing my struggle and trying to help. That happen the 3rd week of June. I told my co worker that in July I would pull my boss aside to ask to work from home more. I work an hour from home and my hospital I would be delivering at. For that reason I wanted to be home more often just in case I went into labor.

The closer we got towards the end the more my doctor said that she thinks that my babe “won’t be tiny”. She was saying that she will most likely be a 9-10 lbs baby. This just reassured me that I would go early. I was a 7lb baby and Josh was 9lbs. It wasn’t outside the realm of possibility to have that big of a baby. I just knew our Sadie wasn’t going to be that big because she would be early. June 26th I had a doctor appointment and the doctor said that she was very convinced the baby would be big if I went full term. I was slowly dilating but I went from .05 cm to 1 cm in 2 weeks. With those to things she said that we should schedule a induction date a week earlier just in case. The doctor said that with it being my first there was no way to know if I would go early or not but we would schedule this just in case. The doctor also said that every time she scheduled an induction the mom went early. I was nervous about being induced because I heard a lot of rough stories about Pitocin and induction labors. The 27th I was at work and called to schedule my induction date. We schedules it for July 13th. I was very excited. VERY EXCITED!! I told my boss my new “Last day of work” that obviously it could be sooner but that was my induction date. When I came home that night it was just a normal night. I ate and then my husband and I hung out. We were laying in bed just listening to music. Putting music on my belly, which is something we had not done before. We started with calm, classical music. Then we had some fun and played DMX and Pink Floyd. I eventually went to sleep and never knew that everything was going change that night.

I was going to do this and the birth in one but it would be way too long. One last blog about the birth.

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IVF Grants or Financial Advice Please

When Josh and I had our IVF Consultation our Doctor had mentioned a Financial consultant that we could talk to as well. I finally decided to call her after we got the news of only being able to do IVF. I called she I got off work at 3:30 and was told that she left a 3pm everyday. Of course, her working hours where the same as mine which meant I had to find time at work to have this conversation. I called the next day at 9AM to verify she got my message and that I would be receiving a call from her today. The receptionist said they would relay that message as well as letting her know about my voicemail from the day before. I called again at 1pm and did not leave a message. I called again at 240pm , thinking this will probably be at least a 20 minute conversation. They stated she was not in her office and they would relay the message. I let the receptionist know that I wanted a call back today and this was the 4th time I had called. She assured me I would get a call. I waited and then called back at 2:59 asking if she had left for the day and then I was finally transferred to the Financial consultant, Regina.

Regina stated she was on vacation and that she had 100 messages to go through so she apologized for not getting to mine yet. I said it was fine and I understood but in all honesty I was rather annoyed I called that many times with no response from her. But at that point I was just relieved to finally have her on the phone. When I told Regina I was given her info from my Doctor to talk to her about our financial options, she seemed slightly confused. Regina then went over the pricing of IVF with me, which I already knew but I did not say that. She went over my insurance with me as well. She stated that my insurance didn’t cover anything for IVF and some portion of the medications(I left that paper at work with the numbers). From there she told me we had to walk in with that $9,800 to get IVF done. She also said that since we were paying for it that there was the ARC program; which is like a package deal. Or the program through the hospital that can potentially pay for our 2nd round if the first doesn’t work. Regina quickly went over how they store the embryos if we don’t/can’t use all that develop. Which is $400 a year. After that Regina told me that we should look into grants if we need any further assistance with paying for IVF procedure.  Then ended the conversation. She rushed the information and rushed me off the phone. She didn’t give me any new information that I didn’t already know. I don’t know if that was the intent or not but I feel like she should have offered me more information. Now it is in my hand and I am very overwhelmed.

To explain better as to why we don’t want to use some other options that have been told to us by others to use. We do not want to sign up for another credit card because we are doing a very good job at paying off our debit. We have 4 more cards to pay off…We had too many credit cards and are trying to consolidate. We also do not want to dip into our 401k’s because we have not been at our jobs long enough for that to help a lot and we don’t want to use 401K funds at all. We are saving money right now but that is going towards a roof that we desperately need so we don’t want to use that either. We do not want to crowd fund yet either. I say yet because my husband and I discussed that IF IVF doesn’t work and adoption is the only option we would consider crowd funding at that point. From my understanding, that leaves us with grants.

Can anyone give us advise on Grants that are good in Ohio? Or any state? Or for veterans?  Do they all cost money to get? I am struggling looking through these mass amounts of sites.I am just so overwhelmed with the amount of them that are offered and I don’t know where to start or which ones are legitimate. Any advice is more then welcomed.

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IUI/IVF Appointment

We had out IUI/IVF Appointment. It was just supposed to be an IVF appointment but we high-jacked it into a mixture of the two.

It started like a normal appointment where the nurse took us back to take my blood pressure, temperature, weight, and ask why we were there. I said that, ” we are here for our IVF Consultation” and the mood slightly changed with the nurse. She took Josh and I into a room and told us the doctor would be with us shortly. We didn’t have to wait long at all before the Doctor came in and took us to her office to chat, in her words. We sat down and the doctor made us a little picture to describe the process of IVF: Medications to increase eggs production and assist in ovulation, blood test and ultrasounds, egg retrieval, combining eggs and sperm to make embryo, waiting to see which ones take, insemination of embryos, waiting to see what takes, and baby!

The Doctor then explained the difference between IUI and IVF because Josh mixes them up sometimes when we talk. From there a lot of our discussion was about Josh’s count. She was saying that all Doctor’s agree that they want no lower then 1 million sperm count after the wash to do IUI or IVF. But there is that gray area that not all doctors agree on. She said that she knows that Josh’s count is low. “I think that we should try IUI first. If after the wash Josh has 2 million or more I feel very good about IUI, if its 1-2 Million I would still want to try IUI, if it is lower then 1 million then I would suggest IVF for the next cycle if IUI did not work. If that first round did not work as long as the 2nd round was 1 million or more I would want to try IUI again. We would only do IUI 2-3 times and if those did not work then I would suggest IVF going forward.” The doctor had high hopes for IUI with us. You could tell that she did not want to jump right into IVF without at least trying a IUI cycle.

We then started to vaguely talk about cost. She stated that there was a woman we should contact if we decide to go to IVF because this woman could give us options to help pay for it if we needed. As I have stated before: IUI is a “flat rate” (as the doctors describe it) of $420.00 for the Insemination and Sperm Wash. This does not include any medications, ultrasounds, blood work, or doctor appointments which we believe will average the IUI to about $550.00. The IVF package is $9,800.00 which includes the egg retrieval with ultrasound, sperm prep, fertilization(with ICSI, if needed), transfer, recovery room, preservation of remaining eggs or embryos, anesthesia, and cycle management. From there you have to pay for the medication which starts at $3,000.00 and go up from there.   You also have to add in the cost of the blood work, ultrasounds, or doctor appointments which we believe will average the IVF to about $15,000.00. She said that the finance lady has options for us and she understands the hesitation. That was refreshing to hear. The doctor also suggested ICSI because it would put the sperm right into the egg instead of allowing them to come together themselves. This is suggested to men suffering from infertility and as stated above, is included with IVF package. The doctor went over the risk with us as well as testing that we can get done to test for certain diseases that would be passed on to the embryo that we could remove. So crazy! From there we touched on my weight. She showed me statistics(which I don’t remember) about how likely it is for us to get pregnant. We had pretty good odds for our ages and diagnosis. BUT those odds drop with my weight being what it is. The doctor stated that the odds aren’t bad but the weight doesn’t help them either. This is something that Josh and I have discussed since the appointment.

The Appointment was an hour. The doctor answered all the questions we had and cleared up the process of both IUI and IVF for Josh. At the end of the appointment she gave us a folder full of IVF information and she put a paper about IUI in the folder for us to look over. I felt great after the appointment. Josh said that he felt the same and that it was nice to get all the information that we did.

We did win a trip to Hawaii and it was amazing. This picture was taken out first morning in Oahu. We woke up at 4AM(accidentally) and watched the sunrise over Diamond head. It was beautiful.

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We took this time to relax and not talk about any baby stuff. Unfortunately, when we got home I got very sick. We have been home a little over a week and I am just starting to feel better. I did start my period and I am on CD 5 which mean I am too late for this cycle to do IUI. I am actually OK with that. This cycle has been miserable, long, and painful. I was thinking that we might wait a month or two so I can get some gym time in. Since I have been sick that has not happened. Josh and I haven’t talked about when we are going to start the IUI process but as of right now I am thinking July. I know that I wont be able to work out this week because I still don’t feel well which means I will be giving myself 2 full months to change my/our diets and exercise more. Josh and I will go over this information again very soon to verify that we are on the same page. I may read this over again to add things that I may have forgot about the appointment but right now this is all I can remember. Thats what I get for waiting so long to type this blog. I will be back soon with our decision on when we will start IUI. I will make sure when that blog of the IUI appointment is very detailed and shortly after the actual procedure….unlike this one. My bad =].

 

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Trying this Patience Thing

The plan has changed again but don’t worry, it is still full of waiting.

Last month Josh was taking his thyroid medicine but he said that he was not feeling any different from it. He said he was still tired, extremely tired and his appetite had not changed much either. I was bugging him a lot about getting tested early to see if this dosage of meds was making a difference. Josh was reluctant. He kept telling me that the doctor wanted him to wait the full 90 days so that is what he is going to do. I tried to be supportive but in my mind we were wasting time when Josh knew it wasn’t making a difference at all. I finally told Josh that I am not trying to nag him or pressure him to go against the doctors wishes. BUT at the same time, the sooner he gets his dosage correct, the sooner we can do the IUI. I said, “what is the harm in calling to ask….the worst that will happen is they tell you to wait the full 90 days.” He understood where I was coming from and made the call. The doctor agreed to a blood test to see where he was at to then determine if he should up the dosage. GREAT…we are moving this along. Josh does the blood test and he says that they didn’t give him a number but that they were upping the dosage again. The beginning of August he started taking the new dosage.

A friend of mine started Clomid last month and just did her second round. Another friend of mine unfortunately just had her second failed IVF cycle and is in the process of figuring out what they will do next. On top of all the babies showing up on my news feed as well as pregnancy chatter, not a lot of pregnancy announcements (for now). There is so much going on with everyone else but we are just sitting here, waiting. I have been avoiding coming on her because I didn’t want to see other people making progress and me…waiting. Selfish, I know. Honestly, I didn’t even want to type today but I needed to get this off my chest. I talked to Josh tonight. He informed me that with this dosage he has to do the full 90 day cycle. I believe that he told me that before but I think that I was being stubborn and selfish trying to get the dosage upped anytime he wasn’t feeling different from the meds. With that, if everything fell in our best interest, in November we could do IUI…MAYBE October but doubtful. I was enraged hearing this. I was asking him what his thoughts were on the situation. We talked about doing another analysis but that is only going to be covered so many times through the VA. Josh informed me that the VA is not like a Hospital, its more like Health Assistance. They aren’t going to do these analysis over and over again(like an infertility clinic would) for infertility unless it is for some sort of preventative care. Which means no more Semen Analysis until we are sure that we will do the IUI because the meds are making a real difference with Josh’s thyroid. Josh said that he has been doing research(I love him) about improving Motility and Sperm Count. He was talking about how there are different foods he can eat, vitamins, and about 10-15 other things that we can do to improve his boys. It was nice for him to show the initiative. I told him that it is so unnerving because neither of us can do a lot to get this going again. I feel like the last year of testing was a waste because we are going back to using Pre-Seed, using OPK’s, planning sex, using the app to track ovulation more and when my period should start, and all the other weird things we did to try to get us pregnant. Doing all of these things with the uncertainty of if it is even worth it. What if we are doing all of that just to find out that Josh’s count barely improved and he needs to up his thyroid medicine again. Which means we wasted all that time, money, and energy just to do it all over again for another 90 days, another three months. I’m not saying sex with my husband is a waste of time but when it is planned sex, it is difficult to keep that fun, that is the energy that I am talking about being wasted. With that being said Josh was excited for this. He was happy that for the next few month it will be all us and no doctors help. He isn’t enthusiastic about us potentially needing doctors to have a baby so anytime we don’t have to use doctor’s he is happy. I wanted to cry. I am over waiting. We started see all the doctors to have a baby and now we are waiting with no doctors until the end of October. I think that I am overly upset about this because we will be passing the three-year mark in September. Three years of TTC with no baby. I am going to allow myself to be sad for a bit. I need to just process this and move past it.

The updated plan is that Josh will hopefully get a CPAP Machine soon, yes, he has that going for him as well. I am hoping that makes a difference on top of the meds. I don’t know if it will but anything to improve his overall health I am down with. I am thinking that in October he can schedule a Semen Analysis depending on how he is feeling. If he still doesn’t feel any better with this med cycle then we will not schedule one. We will schedule his blood test to see if the thyroid medicine needs to be tweaked again. Next paycheck Josh will buy whatever he thinks can improve his motility and count. Next Ovulation(end of August, beginning of September) we will go back to tracking and planning to see what happens. Trying to be optimistic but its tiresome when you feel like you are taking two steps forward only to find out you are actually taking three steps back.

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The Results Are In

This entry is about 2 weeks overdue. I was never able to find the words to type this. I finally decided to do it tonight but due to me waiting so long to type it I don’t remember everything that was said between Josh and myself during our discussions. I apologize but I will do my best.

We got the results of Josh’s Semen Analysis. First, Josh got the results from the guys at the VA. Josh got the call while he was at work. They told him the number, 6.8 Million, and Josh’s response was, ” What does that mean?”  Josh was told by the Nurse on the phone that his number is low and the motility was low as well. The guy said that the paper says that “the average is 40 million and your number is 6.8 which means that it is low.” I was in the car driving home when Josh told me. He didn’t give me any hint as to how he was feeling. Josh had to get off the phone because he was at work which meant I had my hour car ride home to think this over. I was in shock. This wasn’t the plan. It’s supposed to be me. I am supposed to have to suffer through the doctors appointments and test, not him. I got home and went right to the computer to look up what might happen next.

I go to the Mayo Clinic Site because I noticed it is the most user-friendly. First thing I see are potential causes: Infections, Veins that are swelled, Antibodies that attack Sperm, Tumors, Unbalanced Hormones, certain medications, Chromosome defects, etc. Josh was on some narcotics after his car accident when he was in the Navy. He was on these for about 5 years because he has 7 herniated discs in his back, this could be one reason. We recently found out about Josh’s thyroid issues, this could be a reason. Who knows….all of this is running through my brain. Then I go to the treatment: Ultrasounds (Scrotal and/or Transrectal), Hormone or Genetic Testing, Testicular Biopsy, etc. OH MY GOODNESS! He didn’t sign up for this. Is he going to still want to do this? I stopped looking because I didn’t want Josh seeing me doing this research and I needed a break.

Josh came home and I was trying to talk to him about the information we received. He was making jokes. It was very frustrating because I wanted to know how he felt. I didn’t want to force the feelings out but I wanted to know how he was taking all this. I would think about this all the time, waiting for results and expecting the worst, wondering what Josh would think if we couldn’t have children because of me. Now, I am not saying we can’t have kids but now it is on him, not me, and I don’t know what is going on in his head. I went into the bedroom to lay down. I couldn’t figure out how I was feeling. Very random but I was just full of emotions and no understanding of them. Josh came in the bedroom and asked what was wrong? I told him that I was frustrated he wouldn’t tell me how he was feeling and I was worried what was going on with him. He said that he was fine. That he was happy that we finally had a direction of what we needed to do next. I respond with “….that’s it?” he was always confused with this(every time I asked, which was multiple time) because he is Spock, a robot, an emotionless bag of bones. It was driving me crazy that all he was saying was that he was happy that we were on track and then he asked how I was feeling. That’s when it hit the fan. I DON’T KNOW. I’m agitated, elated, heartbroken, relieved, I don’t know. Yes, we have a path. Instead of receiving bad news we would just get news: Clomid didn’t work, HSG was negative, blood work was fine. This was bad news that wasn’t mine. It was Josh’s bad news. I was mad that we didn’t get him tested sooner. I was irritated that we put it off so many times because we thought it was him, that it could never be him. I had a small sense of ease that I could get a break from all the appointments and test. I was devastated that this turned into Josh’s doctor appointments and test. That he was going to have to be poked and prodded. I was prepared to do that and that he wouldn’t have to, he shouldn’t have to. I am devastated with that. He said that everything is ok. That he was doing research too and he was ok with all of it. Josh said that he wants a baby and he will do what he has to so we can have our baby. What a relief. We talked for a bit about it and I felt a lot better. Once the tension subsided I was able to joke with him, “You are a ROBOT, that’s why the sperm is low, you aren’t supposed to have any…AHHH!!!” It lightened the moment and ended that conversation on a positive note. A few days later we continued this conversation and also talked about Adoption. It is nice that he is open to that and I am too. It is our last resort because we want to exhaust out options to have a biological child but just knowing we are on the same page is great to hear.

The next step was to fax the results to my Doctor. After phone tag for a few days I was finally able to talk to her. My Doctor said that Josh’s number was almost 7 Million and she wants to see at least 15 Million. Also, that his Motility was at 27% and she wants to see at least 40%. With these results she wants to re-test him to verify these results are correct. I then informed her about his thyroid and she let out an “Ooohhhhh!” that was such a relief to me. This was not a weary oh. It was a hearty, enlighten oh. She seemed very optimistic with hearing about this new development she wasn’t aware of. The Doctor asked when Josh was going to be tested again and I told her it was August. The Doctor said to contact her in August with his result and we will figure out our next step in August or September.

Wait…..wait……waiting. I know it is a little unrealistic but after the first appointment with the Doctor I was thinking I would be starting with the IUI process in August. Not waiting for results and then starting a plan. I know it is still a possibility but if his numbers don’t improve I don’t know what the next step is and that is nerve-wrecking. I really hope that his numbers improve and we move forward with IUI soon. IUI was our next step but it is also the next step for us with Josh’s diagnosis. IUI is the best bet when dealing with male infertility.

September will mark 3 years of our TTC adventure. I am trying to stay positive because IUI is still a possibility to be done that month. Two years sounded reasonable to me but THREE sounds like a long time. I have been feeling very indifferent now. Some days I feel down on myself with little to no motivation to do anything. Other days I am my normal happy go lucky self. I don’t know if the lack of knowing is causing this or if it is stress from work, life, or whatever else. With that being said I have been listening to a lot of Christian music. I consider myself a religious person but not an organized religion kind of person(if that makes sense). I don’t go to church or read the Bible often. I used to do both of those regularly(church camps, youth nights, every sunday, the whole nine yards) but as an adult there are many things that I don’t agree with or don’t understand; for that reason I struggle with finding a church to go to because I want to believe in everything they teach. Not just bits an pieces. Regardless, I believe in God and I have Faith. I have faith in our situation and that things will work out for us. Whatever that means, we will find out soon enough, but I have faith none the less. I have not been doubting my Faith but I have been needing a reminder of it. I found a song that I feel we can all relate to with the constant battle of doubt. Doubting if we should keep going when TTC.

I know that the song is about God but for me that is not the only thing it is about. It is about our baby and the idea of our baby. Sometimes when struggling with TTC all you can do is hold on to the idea of the family you will get in the end. But there are times when you think that it might not happen. “When its hard to believe in you”. Then there is a reminder, “If only i could fight just a little longer I know it’s gonna make me stronger. I just keep holding on to what I believe. oh, I believe in you” This song has been my little reminder when The Waiting gets to me. When I forget about that Dream that I had. I have been listening to it everyday, multiple times a day. Don’t forget why we do this people. There is hope! Keep the Faith. Even if you aren’t religious have Faith that you will get the family you desire and dream for.

I will be back in August with an update from Josh’s Thyroid appointment and if any of you have advice on this side of Infertility we would appreciate it. This is a new battle that we weren’t expecting but Josh and I are ready for anything.

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Rough Weekend

I guess it is appropriate that I write another post on my one year Anniversary of starting this blog. It’s crazy to think it has been a year. A year of trials and tribulations. A year of numerous babies but none of my own. A year of little solutions. No more of that. This is the year of solutions. It is the year of my dream baby girl. I am holding on to that Babygirl from my Dream. I am very optimistic about 2015. I have received nothing but positive reactions about my Blog. It is a little of a relief to know that I don’t have to repeatedly tell people about what is going on. It’s nice to be able to share feelings that I normally may have difficulties sharing and hope that people will better understand where I am coming from. I am not going to censor myself just because I made this blog public. I am still going to be me. I am still going to be raw with my emotions. This blog will not change. It’s just that now WHEN I get pregnant I won’t be able to announce it on here first like I originally planned to do. Sorry people.

On that note, I started my period on Thursday, after I did my last post. It was a few days early but that is going back to how my cycles were before BC over 6 years ago. They were short, only about 26 days. This was not to bad. I was very busy this weekend from the wedding I was in which meant I didn’t have time to be down on myself about it. I was in a bit of pain on Thursday though. My back kills me as well as my lower abdomen; I become extremely bloated and nauseous almost the entire day of my first full day of my period. It’s awful. I am just glad that it is done as well as this past weekend being done. It was a very very rough weekend.

As I stated, I was in a wedding this past weekend. Friday I left a little early to relax at my Brother’s before the wedding festivities began. I was sick all that morning and a little nervous for the drive down. The ride there was a little over 2 hours and it went smooth. I was relaxing, trying to catch up on my Grey’s Anatomy when my brothers’ cats decided to cuddle up with me. Even though I love animals, I have dogs, and was raised with them I am not a huge fan of cats. I can’t read them and have been bit by a cat before so they kind of freak me out. I was fine with this though. They weren’t too cuddly so it was ok. I realize after a bit that I was itching my arm and as I look down I realize that I have a rash on my forearm were the cat was brushing against me. I jumped off the couch and ran upstairs to take a Benadryl. After taking it I remembered that I had already taken a 24hr Benadryl the night before. I instantly thought, “oh $#@t! what did I just do” Two 24hr Benadryl in about an 18 hour period. I then begin taking pictures of my arm and sending it to my husband, my mother-in-law(a nurse) and a Nurse friend of mine. I don’t take much medicine so I first ask what will those pills do to me. my Mother-in-Law told me that I will just be drowsy but nothing will happen which made me feel a lot better. I left the house and decided to go to the venue early for the Rehearsal. The rehearsal went well and after that we all went to the Rehearsal Dinner. That’s when I started to not feel well. My arms had cleared up but I became extremely bloated and got a massive headache. My allergies have been bugging me all week but for whatever reason they really kicked in. I still don’t understand how because I had 2 Benadryl in me. I tried to eat but everything was making me more nauseous. The Bride asked me to run her to her Apartment and then back to her hotel after the Rehearsal Dinner and by the time we were done I got to my brothers around 10pm. I chatted with them for a bit, verified that the cats where not in the room I would be sleeping in, and went to bed.

I woke up Wedding Day morning feeling a little groggy but overall much better then the day before with no reactions to the cats. I took a shower then went to the hotel. I was the first one to get my makeup done. I only got my foundation done. I knew how to do my eye makeup but because I have very oily skin I wanted foundation that would last all day. I then did my eye make-up and had on of the other girls do my hair. At no fault to her, my hair was not doing what it should. After about an hour and a half as well as two different girls working on my hair it turned out awful. Again, not there fault, my hair was just doing its own thing. After that frustration, I tried to curl it and it wouldn’t hold curls so I just gave up. We were all eating lunch and the worst thing that could happen did happen. A girl accidentally spilt orange juice on my bridesmaids dress that was hanging up……….the Matron of Honor hangs the dress up in the bedroom and directs me to grab damp towels to try to absorb some juice. It was a Navy Blue Convertible Dress like these(not us): dresses

After patting it with damp towels, contacting a few dry cleaners, putting the dress in the shower, using 3 hair dryers on the dress, and about 40 minutes later the dress was still stained. There was nothing we could do. The girl that spilled the juice felt horrible. She was more upset then I was. I wasn’t mad at her in any way. I was just frustrated that so much was going wrong. It was time for us to get dress and I was the only one that couldn’t remember how to wrap my dress so I was having difficulties with it all day. We take a pictures inside then head outside to take some. It was close to 90 in Ohio on Saturday. At one point in time we were all sitting down on stairs that lead to a building where the bride and groom where taking photos. I told everyone to be careful of bird poop then one of the girls in the wedding party that I wasn’t a fan of, to say the least decided to make a comment. “Tiffany, with your dress does it really matter?” ARE YOU KIDDING ME! It upset me that she said that not because of my awful day but because of the girl that spilled the drink. She already felt horrible and had said she wished it was her dress. Why would you say something like that because it only makes her feel worse. By the end of the pictures my hair had no curl and my make up I paid for was gone. We finally get to the venue to relax before the ceremony. I drank about 3 bottles of water and a Sprite then ran to the bathroom to freshen up. I pulled my bangs back to see a massive heat rash all across my forehead and going down the side of my face. I was mortified. The girl that spilled the juice was in the bathroom with me and I just let it out. I ranted about how awful everything had going to me. I emphasized that I wasn’t mad at her at all, which I wasn’t. It was just one thing after another that was ruining m weekend. I said, ” Every wedding has a bridesmaid that everything goes wrong for…and it was me for this one.” After a little more venting we waited with the rest of the group for the ceremony to begin.

The wedding was beautiful. I wish that my wedding was as amazing as hers. The ceremony was not traditional and catered to this couple with a reading from a book and a knot ceremony because they are rock climbers. By far one of the most unique weddings I have ever been too. I LOVED IT! Even with broken shoes I made it through and was grateful for the reception to begin. The bride warned me that they were going to thank the moms and I thought I was prepared for that but I wasn’t. I cried. I just tried to not let the Bride see me and I don’t think she did. I think that I would have been ok if all of the previous things didn’t occur. After ALL of that I was just thinking, “Get this food to me so I can dance this all away.” We eat and I decide that I need to call Josh. He didn’t come with me because it would have been too expensive to board the dog and get their shots updated. Once I call him and talk to him for the first time the whole weekend, I broke down. I tried to hide it and I don’t think that he noticed. I didn’t want the first and probably only time we talked to be sad. It was amazing to hear his voice. It gave me that boost to go have fun. So, I did. I danced and danced and danced. After a few hours I realized I was itching my arm. I look down to find both my arms full of a heat rash. AGAIN, ARE YOU KIDDING ME? I was done at that point. I went outside for a bit but then left shortly after. I showered that night at my brother’s and left first thing in the morning without saying goodbye. I had no desire to talk to anyone.

I get home to my wonderful husband who got me three Pandora Charms for Mother’s Day. I get ready and we go out to eat then to random stores to simply spend time together. Everything was going great until I got sick. My stomach started to hurt and we went home. I am grateful that I didn’t start on Mother’s Day though. That would have killed me. I can’t begin to emphaize how grateful I was to be home and done with this weekend. Mother’s Day is over, the wedding is over, and now time to focus on work and my new Doctor Appointment on Monday. I just need to get through the next six days. Tonight ends on a good note CAVS WON!!!!! Six more days people. Six more days!

2

Updates and Public Posting

I have accomplished a lot over the last month. I got it together.

I contacted my Insurance that I have through my new job. To sum it up. I have a high deductible HSA Account which means that I have to pay out of pocket for everything or with my Health Saving Account until i hit my deductible. Infertility is not covered….except the usual diagnosis and treatment. As in, if I have Endo, the diagnosis of that and the treatment of the Endo is covered. BUT not anything that will help us get pregnant: meds, appointments, nothing. Great!

I started going to the gym again. It has been a slow process but I am back. I feel so good after I go which makes me excited to continue.

I also decided to get a second opinion and see a different doctor. I believe that there was a lot of miscommunication with my first RE. That made me uneasy to continue the process with her. I know a friend that is seeing her with no problems. I spoke with 2 separate friends about this. The first friend is seeing an RE at the same facility that I have been going to: it’s just a different RE. Lynn* is the other friends I have been speaking with who is seeing a RE at a completely different facility then what I was at now. Lynn’s* process with this doctor has been awesome which makes me very optimistic about her. I set up at Appointment with this doctor for May 18th.

I also started spotting today; VERY VERY Lightly. Barely anything. but it started. I am not supposed to start until Sunday…Mother’s Day. Yea, thats happening. I am spotting 5 days early. I am trying to tell myself that maybe, JUST MAYBE, it is implantation. At the same time I am telling myself, “Don’t get your hopes up!” I also woke up extremely nauseous. All day, all I have been thinking about is this spotting. This is the worst part of the journey. The uncertainties. I haven’t started yet but there is a little brown. Which could be me starting OR it could be me getting pregnant. I am not taking a test until a week after I am supposed to start. So I will test on May 17tth or May 16th. The latest my period has been before is 3 days. I am hoping that IF I am not pregnant that it comes on Sunday or the day after. Obviously I don’t want to start on Mother’s Day but I just want consistency, which is not an option with TTC.

I also posted a lot on my Facebook and Instagram during National Infertility Week. I posted ecards, links about infertility, or quotes about what Infertility and how this effects us emotionally. With that I was essentially making it known that Josh and I were struggling with this disease. I posted everyday during that week, sometimes multiple posts. I also got an overwhelming amount of positive feedback from people. Every post got so many “Likes” as well as positive comments. I also received five different messages and two different text of people giving us well wishes, sending prayers, letting me know they are there for us, or asking me questions about what I have been going through. I was elated. I knew there was a reason that I decided to open up about infertility. I knew that when I started aggressively posting things that it was going to draw attention to me but I was prepared for that and for negativity. And it didn’t happen. Lynn* also publicly posted her blog on Facebook. I was so surprised. I thought she was so strong for being able to post something so personal. It made me want to post mine. I was intimidated to post something so personal, it made me very vulnerable, and couldn’t believe that she posted hers. To explain a little, her blog is mostly medical. It does have some emotional aspects to it but not as much venting as mine does. I took some time to myself to read over my blog again. I examined it, walked away for a bit, examined it again, and did some editing. I didn’t do a lot of editing but there were some things about others that I took out. It was not my place to put other people business out there. The people that I do talk about I asked them to read it to verify that it was ok I posted it. I decided to post it to Facebook. After reading this I think that it will be on there. I spoke with my husband about it and all he said was, “Does it have all our sex stuff on it?” which means that he is OK with it. I know that there will be people that feel negatively about this and will have their opinions. As all of us know, we deal with this all the time. I can handle that and accept that I am opening myself up to it even more by posting this. BUT I also know that by opening up about our struggles and showing the raw emotions I feel that it can potentially help others. Others that feel alone, experience the Taboo of Infertility, or don’t have anyone to talk to about this   disease. So, here it goes. Things are getting real; Get ready because I am in it to win it! Time to get this baby train going.

2

2WW…Finally

When we finally started using the OPK I knew what I was looking for BUT was getting very annoyed because all I was seeing was this:

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With the conversations Josh and I were having about ,”What to do if you don’t ovulate” I was getting unbelievably nervous. What if I don’t ovulate? I mean, I know that it has been 2 years(and 5 months) and we have never checked that before. I know now that we should have just bit the bullet and bought the OPKs earlier but now that we were using them I was scared that I didn’t. I don’t know why I was worried because from the BPT I knew I ovulated late. It’s still trying on the soul when you keep seeing that BFN every day or twice a day!

One morning before work I forgot to test and knew that while I was at work I needed to not use the restroom at least an hour and a half before I left work. That way I gave myself the time to take the test right when I got home. I come home, chat with Josh for a moment, then go to the restroom. I set a timer because I will either A. sit there forever and wait for an answer or B. forget about the test and miss the result. When I hear the timer go off. i trot to the restroom with no particular thought in mind. I was just blank because every other time it was negative. I didn’t want to get my hopes up.

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I Screamed!!!! Holy Sh#t! BOO, YES, IT SAYS YES, I OVULATE, IT SAYS YES, LETS DO THIS!!!! I was excited to put it lightly. CD17 this time. We both agreed that we are going to buy these for the next few months and still can’t figure out why we didn’t buy them sooner. With the Clomid we were always focused on doing it early. We even changed the time we took it to an earlier time to see if that would help. Obviously not. Josh thinks that because we were always focused on the early part of the cycle that maybe it truly was bad timing. To a point I agree but with how long it has been I don’t know if I fully agree with that. It can’t just be “bad timing”

With my new job and not knowing how the insurance works there we figured that for now OPK are our best shot until we figure out my insurance in March. I get all the insurance information on my first day(February 23rd) we will determine what to do from there. As I said before, my doctor wants to meet so that is the first step or get 2nd opinion then go from there.

I am supposed to start on Valentines Day…so romantic. Way to ruin everything Flo! In a week we will see what happens. Let’s get the BFP!!!

2

Why Did You Do That Dove?

If you are like everyone else is the world I am assuming most of you saw that Super Bowl. And with the Super Bowl comes the commercials. There were a lot of serious commercials and some funny ones as well. I liked the BMW i3 commercial and the Fiat one with the Viagra pill. Both cute commercials to lighten the intense game. The Nationwide commercial was extreme for me but definitely memorable, probably what they were going for. Obviously we have Budweiser. That dog…gets me every time! Josh said last years commercial was better but I thought this year Budweiser did just as well. I teared up, that little guy could have been eaten if it wasn’t for those Clydesdales. For me the most memorable commercial was Doves. Now most people probably wouldn’t say that or even remember the commercial compared to the others. Watching the TV intently through the commercials and I see this adorable baby jumping into Daddy’s arms in a pool. Then they continue with another adorable baby calling to Daddy…and it goes on and on with that.

Once that ultrasound was up I started to tear up, then the girl hugs her dad crying and I was done. I tried to hide it but Josh was sitting in the chair next to me and knew. He got out of the chair and crawled over to me. He hugged me and just asked the obvious question, “What’s wrong babe?” I tried to pull myself together but the second he hugged me and I felt his embrace the tears were flowing. “I want to give you a baby that can call Daddy out to you.” He just looked at me, smiled, and said ,”You will”. At that point the game came back on and I was doing everything to get him to his chair so I could pick up the pieces this Dove commercial crumbled for me. I said, “The game is back on….you are going to miss it.”  He held me tight and said, “I don’t care.” It was so sweet for him to drop everything except me. I love him so much it is unbelievable. He may not be that emotional or say all the gushing things but when it comes down to it he really tries to be that sensitive guy with the shoulder I need. He has been wonderful through this and I really am grateful for him.

Since I have been taking the OPK I have had nothing but BFN and its become a little frustrating. With this stupid app that I have it showed today as my last ovulation day and nothing. Now, when I took my temperature it showed that I ovulate late. I am hoping that I ovulate closer to CD 17-19. Seeing as CD 12-16 don’t feel like working with me. Another Josh moment I adore. As we were talking about this yesterday he was asking if its possible for me to not ovulate. I respond with a Yes. He then asked what would happen if I didn’t. I explained that it depends on what corse we/the doctors want to take. I could be but on Meds or need shots or nothing. Josh responded with a simple, “OK, I have no problem giving you shots if that’s what you need.” Thanks for that because I don’t think I could do it myself.

Today it decided to down pour some snow on to us Ohioans so when Josh and I spoke this morning it was about our awful drives to work and just making sure we both made it ok. I then get a random text from Josh in the middle of the day that said, “A menstrual period can occur even if ovulation has not occurred. Ovulation can occur even if a menstrual period has not occurred. Mind Blown.” I call him, “…someone has been doing some reading.” We simply chuckle at each other. He said that he had been thinking about it and decided to do some reading. He found that I could be ovulating right before my period “so maybe it was bad timing.” I hate that phrase but for once he could be right. We would never mess around close to my period for the messy reasons that we don’t want to happen. Who knows(I will in a few days, hopefully) maybe I could ovulate later then the usual Joe! Lets all hope for some BFP in the future, this girl needs to ovulate!

5

Holidaze

Lets get this out of the way: I had my period the beginning of December. Now that THAT is out of the way; November and December haven’t been to bad. They have had their downs FOR SURE but nothing crazy! November was exhausting from my promotion at work. There is never enough time in the day to do anything. I struggle each day to accomplish everything that needs to be done. In November I was working at 2 different locations for most of the month so that made things even more difficult. My Husband bought me flowers, which he rarely ever does, AND he had them delivered to my work(Bonus Point). Josh has never done that for me before so it was truly amazing. During that time my good friend Lynn*, had a polyps removed from her uterus so hopefully she can get back to the TTC game. In, November we spent a lot of time with Em* and her 2 amazing kids; almost every weekend. It was great I adore that family. November is mostly a blur. But then December…Winter is Coming….(Sorry I’m not sorry for saying that)

December was positive until the end. December flew by and as everyone said, “with Thanksgiving being late it made December and Christmas seem earlier then expected.” So True! We struggled to get all the presents bought this year for everyone. I also took a trip to Columbus to watch my brother get sworn in to be a Police Officer which was a great way to start off my December. For whatever reason, I was feeling extremely optimistic about ovulation and this cycle. I have no medical reason to feel that way but I did. Maybe it was the Christmas spirit(I love Christmas time.) I don’t know but in my mind it was going to be good. “It’s the end of the year and now is the time. This is going to happen!” That was what I was saying to myself all the time. All was well, feeling positive, Christmas shopping and Christmas was in full swing. I came home one day after work and came on here to read up on all the blogs. My phone had died at work, was on silent, and I forgot to plug it in when I got home. I was watching my Criminal Minds on Netflix and reading blogs. I was starting to get a mild headache(I was REALLY behind on the blogs,  I am a slow reader, so I had been on here for about two hours) I decided to jump over to off the blogs and look at Facebook for a minute before bed at around 1030PM. I was glancing through when I saw a post from my cousin. I skimmed over the post and was reading about sorrow, how strong my grandma was, the multiple medical problems and surgeries, and how my grandma and his mom(who passed away 3 years ago) dancing together now….WHAT? WAIT…WHAT HAPPEN? My grandma has been in a nursing home for a while with medical problems so its not like this was out of nowhere but we where hoping for her to make it through the holidays. I run to my phone with adrenaline racing through my body. I grab my phone and have 4 missed calls from my dad, 1 from my cousin, 1 from my cousins wife, and 1 from my mom. I go to listen to my dads voicemail and my phone dies. I am then racing around the house frantically searching for my phone charger. I finally find it and call my dad back. I simply begin the conversation with, “I think I know what happened.” His voice was full of pain. He explained his side of the story. The grandma was feeling great so they did some legal stuff, sent out her Christmas cards, and she was getting ready for the Christmas party the nursing home she was in was throwing that night. My dad had some running around to do so he said he would come back to take her later. He then got the call and her heart had stopped. It was running at 40% for a while so once it stopped there was no starting it back up. I just wanted to get off the phone. I didn’t want to talk about it anymore. I didn’t want to talk to anyone or function or think or breath. I just wanted to cry. So, we hung up and thats what I did. My husband was asleep and is a heavy sleeper so he had no clue what was going on. I then decide to call my Cousin’s Wife to talk. She is an amazing person and adore her. We connect on a different level because she also had TTC difficulties but after a year and a half she has a beautiful baby boy. Once she answered the phone and asked how I was doing I lost it. We were discussing details and trying to figure things out. After that day everything went down hill from there.

My grandma passed away on Wednesday December 17, 2014. Thursday I drove down to Akron to help my dad figure out when the Funeral and Wake would be, get her an outfit, write the obituary, and whatever else needed to be done. It was a very rough day trying to get my dad to make any decisions. I can empathize that this was my dad’s last living immediate relative besides myself that has passed: His father, Sister, and Mother have all died. This has to be extremely difficult. But he also made things extremely difficult for everyone else. He would not decide on when to have the funeral and wake. During that time because my other cousin wasn’t responding to my dad so he said he wouldn’t decide on a day until he heard from that other cousin. My cousins live in Florida so my father was trying to accommodate them. I told my dad that since he hasn’t got back to any of us just pick a day and he can figure it out. Its now “Friday night, lets get this going, he’s just dodging you” My dad then said, “What, like you where dodging me the night she died?” I LOST MY S#%T!!!!!!!! I started screaming at my dad. Are you kidding me? Thats what you think I was doing? I understand we don’t have a great relationship but you think I was avoiding the four phone calls and voicemails? You think I was “dodging” you  when I helped pick out her outfit, write the obituary, and give you days to do this…thats me avoiding you? I cursed and yelled and I know that I probably shouldn’t have with the mental state I could imagine that he was in. He was trying to laugh it off like it was a joke. I told him, “Don’t laugh its not funny, don’t ever compare me like that. You have no right! I did nothing wrong because my phone was dead, it was not a malicious thing I was doing on purpose because I knew what was going on. Don’t you ever talk to me like that again!” And insert cursing wherever it fits…or doesn’t!

Luckily my step daughters band concert was in the middle of all that so I got a small release. A small escape from the negative world I was surrounded by. Needless to say I messed around with my husband Saturday night and Sunday morning(the day of the wake) to blood…on CD15…11(ish) days early. WHAT? I was freaking out so I instantly started texting nurse friends and other friends to find out what they think. Most thought it was that I was pregnant. I was trying to stay realistic about it but I found myself getting excited…in-between the awful cramps I was experiencing. After talking with other people they said stress which I had plenty of. I got it together and went to the wake. I called my doctor the next day and they confirmed. STRESS. “If it stays longer, more painful, more blood, etc. go to the doctor.” I got my “random period” as the doctor called it. So, much for my positive attitude, its going to happen, “we got this” kind of attitude. After having my grandma’s funeral on my 27th birthday and my random period I have decided 2014 Sucked!!!! I had a wonderful Christmas but besides that I AM OVER IT! To new beginnings and a wonderful 2015. May the TTC train end this year for all of us and we get to the Baby Station in 2015. I am going to blog more often. Today was a more personal update but I will get back to the TTC Blog! Glad to see that most of you are doing well!