3

Is February Over Yet?

This month has been very rough. It’s a short month but it didn’t hold back at all. Work has been pretty stressful, my husband has been traveling a lot, the weather has been insane, and I started my period today. Ehh! Needless to say I am glad its almost done. I have also been very nervous and stressed waiting for Josh to do his test along with waiting for the results.  We finally got them back

Blood Test- Testosterone: 488 ng/dl (Low, Improved), Luteinizing: 10 mU/mL (Improved), FSH: 10.6 mU/mL(High)

Sperm Test- Semen PH: 7.2 (Low, Same), Concentration(After Removing “Bad Sperm): 2.4 (Million, Low, Decreased), Total Count: 8.78 (Million, Low, Decreased), Total Motile Sperm(What Doctors can use): 4.74 (Low, Decreased), Motility: 54% (Good, Same), Sperm Morphology: 6% (Low), AmOrphology Sperm: 79% (High, Improved by decreasing)

Josh’s Doctor also said to continue taking these vitamins for another 4-6 weeks, retest, and then discuss options such as IUI, Freezing Sperm, and IVF.

So, Thats where we are at. I had Josh’s urologist send this information to my RE. I got the call from her today. She asked if the Urologist made any suggestions and I told her the above. She said, ” first of all this is a normal change in sperm. Sometimes numbers can fluctuate that much…but…this is still low.” I became a little tense when she said that. I asked the minimum that we would need to be able to do IUI. I have heard numerous different numbers but the lowest was 8 Million, is that true? She said that they do prefer that people walk in, before the wash, with 15 million. BUT all they really need is 1 Million after the wash. WOW! That is not what I expected to hear. Then she said what I expected to hear, “You should both start talking and thinking about IVF.” THERE IT IS. I knew it was coming but it still hit me like a ton of bricks. I told the doctor that I know that IVF is expensive and IUI is only about $700 after all is said and done. But is it smart for us to even try IUI and waste that $700 that we could put toward IVF? I know it isn’t much but its still $700 toward the $15,000.00 that we need to do IVF. She responded the best way. “I won’t have you do IUI if I don’t think it has a chance of working.” I felt like she had our back when she said that. She said that she believes that there is 1 Million available out of Josh’s count. I then said,” Not to be a pessimist but if that doesn’t work what do we need to walk in to do the IVF?” She told me that she requires the couple to come in and meet with her to go over everything IVF. The appointment will take about 45 minutes to go over everything and that we could talk about IUI as well. We can get all the information about both procedures. Perfect and intimidating. This is a lot of information to take in but not as much as we will get at this appointment coming up. Something I don’t think I have mentioned is that: we won a trip to Hawaii!!!  We will be gone in April right after we get Josh tested and hopefully after we get his results. That way we can really think things over and do which ever we decide in May because I will be in Hawaii if my cycle doesn’t completely screw up. Those were the orders from the Doctor as well. She said to take this time to get ready for our trip, get Josh Tested again, hopefully get the results before we leave and enjoy the trip. She also said that we could do the IVF appointment ahead of time. To have all the information for when we come back. Josh has to look at his schedule for us to schedule the appointment to reify he will be in town. We will do that as soon as possible.

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I feel better about the situation. Obviously, I am nervous to do IUI because of Josh’s count. But if the doctor says it might work…thats HUGE! On the same hand IVF is so expensive. It isn’t even a guarantee. There is so much to think about and I’m excited to get this appointment set up. I am so sick of waiting.

 

2

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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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!

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Are we Still on the Same Page?

I’ve been playing the fun game we all know and hate which is the 2WW. I am pretty sure I started spotting today so looks like the 2WW ended a little early for me. I was very hopeful because I haven’t been feeling that great lately: bloating(all the time), headaches(which I never get), nauseous, and tired. Now, I know that this spotting could be nothing and I could still be pregnant but I have a feeling it is just my Broken Time(as my husband calls it) creeping up to come visit. Another month down, another to go.

The other day after the Clomid Cycle my husband was talking to me about his insurance at his work. He had just reached the time frame required to be able to sign up for their benefits and was telling me about his conversation with a friend of his at work. Josh had told his friend about our situation and was asking what the company’s coverage was like for fertility or the pregnancy process. The friend said that its not that great and that it really just covers the basic stuff for pregnancy and child birth. The guy then asked Josh what his game plan was with us. Josh then told the guy, “If we aren’t pregnant by the end of the winter(which for our area is about March) then I think we should hold off for a bit. Heres the thing, my dogs are my kids so we can focus on the house for a bit first.” I was in a daze after hearing that. He doesn’t want to try any more. This is too much for him and he is checked out. I didn’t say a word the whole time he talked. i just sat there and processed every word that fell out of his mouth. Hanging on every syllable and praying that he comes back to the place where we were when he wanted this just as bad as me. So, the conversation just ended and I knew I wanted to talk to him about it but I wanted to find the words and not become a blithering idiot in the process.

We took some time off together because our 2 year anniversary is tomorrow. With that being said I knew that we needed to schedule Josh’s Semen Analysis because they only do the testing from 7-2 and Josh works from 8-5 every day. Having a limited time frame I wanted us to do it on a day off so we weren’t “rushed”. I start to call to get everything scheduled and they need his insurance card and information. Well, his insurance is through the VA and when I tell the woman that on the phone she lists some carriers that Josh used to have but doesn’t anymore. She said that we now have to be contacted to verify if it will be covered or not. I then try to cheat the system and contact the local facility to schedule the appointment and ,sure enough, they send me back to the previous scheduler. I tell Josh to contact he VA to see if they can do it there and it be covered. He said his phone was dead and he will charge it, mow the lawn, and when he’s done he will call. He said that I can do my testing but maybe we should hold off on his until we know more. Also that I should contact my insurance today to see what all is covered since we haven’t done that yet either and we are already getting things tested. Now is the time to chat. Keep it together Tiffany(that’s Me), just find out where he stands.

I open my mouth, not even thinking and the word start falling out. “Babe, I wanna chat real quick before you go outside…So, what are you thinking will happen if the Clomid doesn’t work?” He then starts to talk about how we already talked about this the other day. That if the Clomid doesn’t work that we will take a break and get the house fixed up(need a new roof because its leaking, new furniture, carpet, bed. We also need to patch some holes still, paint, and a few other things). He said that he doesn’t want to get into the expensive IBF(Such a dork and corrected that) when we have work to be done around here. I then asked the question I was dreading, “So, after that does that mean you don’t want to try anymore, ever?” “No! not at all!” A HUGE sigh of relief falls over me. I couldn’t have been happier at that moment. He even said he’s not even considering us talking about adoption yet or anything like that and the he definitely still wants to continue trying. “We will do the every other day thing when we think you are ovulating and all of that stuff. But if we had a baby now I would be happy but worried too because we need so much done to the house.” Which I do agree with him on. It would be hard to try to care for a new baby financially when we need to spend close to 10k on a new roof. I told him that I was just worried because the other day he talked about our dogs being our kids and I thought he just didn’t want to try anymore. He corrected that and said that he wants kids with me,”You see how I get around kids of corse I want one.” So, we agreed that after these rounds of Clomid(I have 2 more) that we will hold off on the insemination process(which ever we may need) until we at least get a new roof. We will still do my testing on the 25th and if I need “cleaned out” we will do that as well. But, depending on what my insurance says will determine if we continue my testing or if we wait on that as well.

Its hard to hear that we are waiting again but we are on the same page. We are not waiting forever, we are still going to try. This isn’t an end, this isn’t a bump in the road, or an delay. This is just a different route to the same goal. I couldn’t be more overjoyed that we are still in this for the long haul. He is just being my realistic reminder while I sit in my baby bubble. So, Monday is the day. I find out if my Tubes and Uterus are doing their job for the most part. Then we go from there. hoping for the best, Preparing for the worst. I’ll be back with an update then! After our emotional conversation(only emotional for me, stupid period) feeling very clear. Lets do this!