The Truth about Sperm...

from my point of view anyways...

Yesterday, I was having a conversation with my friend, Tina. She was kind enough to try and divert my attention from the fact that Rick is out of town until the end of the week. We talked about everything from work to Billy Mays untimely death to toilet bowl cleaner to food to paid surveys to litter boxes and finally ended up on Sperm Talk.

It started out innocent enough. We were talking about various supplements to help enhance our husbands "army". Next up she asked how many semen analyses he had....

me: 1 technically

tina: so explain what you mean by technically

me: well, they still look at his sperm with each IUI we've had and basically doesn't look any better or any worse

tina: i was thinking you had some sort of home testing or something

me: nah - it grosses me out. they always make me look at it.

tina: really?

me: yep - it's like bed bugs crawling around. they always shove my face in front of the microscope.

tina: weird

me: i always expected them to look like what you normally see sperm looking like... nope... hundreds of little guys flying around the slide... like little sperm with helmets... **zoom**

tina: LMAO

me: it freaks me out... i didn't know what i was looking at the first time... i thought i couldn't see anything... so dr. p got up there with me and looked at what i saw and said that was them... i almost died...

tina: lol

me: i seriously expected to see this...

tina: eyes and all? LMAO

me: well, maybe not with the eyes, but i expected to see something big... but this is what i saw... but teenier...

tina: that's pretty funny...

me: all the pictures i had ever seen of them and they were HUGE! i felt like a moron...

anywho... i hope you enjoyed my DUH moment of the day...


The What Ifs

It's been such a long journey to get to this point. We are approaching 4 years since we started TTC. Countless tests, doctors appointments, failed cycles, friends/family having babies... Through it all however, Rick and I have remained strong together. He is my rock. It's been hard for us to divulge a lot of what has happened over the last 4 years to people, but slowly we've started explaining our situation to more friends/family members...

It's amazing looking back on our journey. We've said it before and we'll say it again. We NEVER thought that we would be to the point of IVF. We always knew in the back of our minds that it was an option. But like most options, they cost money. We aren't lucky enough to have any of the IVF covered under insurance. For a brief fleeting moment, we thought it would never happen. We had researched options for financing - because let's face it... who usually has close to 15 grand just hanging around?? We were just getting ready to apply for it when we found out that the financing had been pulled. I called my mom and very matter of factly told her that we were done. No more actively TTC. We just didn't have it in us, particularly financially. We knew it would take us well over a year to save that much money... and that was barring not needing any of the extra money. I came home that day and just sat on the couch. We got a phone call later that evening that would change our lives. My mom so graciously offered to loan us the money. It was the most touching phone call of my life. Rick and I talked about it and discussed how much and how soon we could afford to pay it back.

Now... on to the what ifs...
WHAT IF one if us lose our job and can't afford to pay her back on the agreed upon schedule???
WHAT IF our cycle gets cancelled???
WHAT IF we don't retrieve enough eggs???
WHAT IF our eggs stop developing???
WHAT IF we don't have any eggs to transfer back???
WHAT IF we don't have any eggs to freeze???

It like a freaking roller coaster. We could seriously drive ourselves insane with all of the What Ifs... I feel like a human pincushion sometimes... We know that this is what it will take in order to have a baby (we hope).


I'm alone... again... :)

I've always been the girl who gets up in the morning and goes all day long. Napping for me isn't too much of an option. If a nap occurs, I'm either sick or absolutely exhausted. I happen to live with a man who can pretty much nap anytime anywhere. It gets annoying... LOL

It's currently 2:20 and yet again, I sit here alone. Repeatedly surfing the same websites over and over... This in itself is not proving to be fun. Michael Jackson's death is over shadowing everything. Not only can Rick sleep anytime anywhere... But we have two lovely dogs who of course sleep when he sleeps. hahaha


In other news... Day #3 of Lupron has me in another funk. Just have a constant bad headache. I'm sleepy, but not sleepy enough to need to take a nap... My eyes are half open half closed due to the massive headache. I've heard a lot about the Lupron fog and I'm literally right in the thick of it... I'm hoping it doesn't last for the next month, but I'm thinking since I'm going to be taking some amount of Lupron throughout the entire process until the ER, it might be here to stay...

Anywho... I'm signing off for the evening... Check back in tomorrow... :)


I need a lighthouse to clear the fog...

Well, today it hit me...

Migraine... check...
Fog like demeanor... check...

It still sucks... Rick is going to be out of town on business Monday-Thursday this upcoming week...

Rick has been taking good care of me... We have no plans for the weekend, which is a pure rarity... Signing off til tomorrow...


IVF Protocal Day #1

Today is cycle day 21... Which means... Day #1 of Lupron. I woke Rick up and we experienced it together. We talked long ago about the fact that we want to go through every step of this together. There are so many things to think about, it's hard to calm my nerves, though I know it's necessary... :)

I'll be back later with how the day went...

Oh! Did I happen to mention that I got my first Jury Summons a couple days ago? Did I happen to mention when the Summons is for? Yeah... Holy Hell... It just so happens to fall the week of our estimated egg retrieval/transfer. Can you believe that? What the hell are the chances.... LOL


ETA: Today was pretty uneventful in Lupron land. I'm excited about the possibility that it might continue... But that might just be a pipe dream...


Things to come...

Surely God is my help; the Lord is the one who sustains me. - Psalm 54:4

This bible verse speaks volumes to me. I've been trying to open my heart more to God. I find myself praying at all times of the day. I've felt better recently than I have in a long time.

I am hoping that my calm will continue throughout our IVF.


In other news... Rick is off buying clippers for Quincy... We're going to attempt to clip him tonight... EECK!! He has so much fur and this summer is going to be a hot one, we just feel bad that he has to run around wearing a fur coat. If we do an awful job, I'll be sure to take photos to point out our gigantic screw up!! LOL


Manic Monday #2

* I can't believe that in 4 days I will be taking my first dose of Lupron and our IVF will finally be underway!

* Why is the weekend only 2 days long? I think it should be a mandatory 3 days (at least)

* Father's Day was a nice little Sunday this year. Wishing and hoping that next year, Rick will get his first father's day!

* Never underestimate the power of a dogs love. We have 2 pups and no matter what they always know when you are in need of a little extra TLC... We love them so much... :)

* We had our IVF consent signing Friday. It was kind of weird. It felt like a very solemn thing. We had to go through 18 pages of documentation. Kinda like signing our mortgage documents. Weird but invigorating.

*I had breakfast with my mom Saturday. There is just something about talking to mom one on one that anyways makes me feel better. I know that she will always be there though thick and thin. I'm a lucky lucky girl...


It's a sign... in my eyes...

I finally got a return phone call from my General Physician's office about my Vitamin D results. It turns out my levels are pretty low and I will need to be on a daily supplement (my prenatal vitamin alone isn't enough). The nurse wanted to make it VERY clear to me that I MUST take this every day. She told me that calcium and Vitamin D are two of the most important supplements that a woman can take.

Rick and I have been reading up plenty about Vitamin D and are very surprised at everything that Vitamin D can control. I was surprised when that list included obesity and hypertension. I'm hoping that maybe I will take off some more weight and my BP will stabilize once I am on a daily regime of this.

I was also very surprised by the fact that it can cause birth defects in pregnant women that have a deficiency. I've been wondering for SO LONG why we haven't been getting pregnant. I know it may seem silly to say that my GP might have saved our baby(ies) lives. I've been asking for signs. I would like to think that my sign came a week and a half ago when my GP called and said that he finally received my records from my old doctor. We were both surprised that I knew nothing of this issue, even though my previous GP ran a Vitamin D test which showed the low levels. I feel like it was a sign, especially before our IVF. I feel so much better knowing that I will have one more defense helping my body become the perfect home for our baby(ies).


Manic Monday #1

I refer to each and every Monday as Manic Monday. I know that might sound like I'm setting myself up for a bad week, but oh contraire! I actually don't mind Mondays... It's Wednesdays that I can't stand... :) For Manic Mondays I like to recount just some random thoughts...

**The Lakers beat my Magic last night. I woke up this morning to find that half of LA is in chaos and I just don't understand it. We're talking about basketball people... BASKETBALL... Is it necessary to destroy a city because they win??

**My new KitchenAid Ice Cream Maker attachment rocks... It took a little bit of prep work, but tonight after I get home from my long day I'll be enjoying a nice bowl of fresh strawberry ice cream. mmm

**I'm bummed that DH is leaving on a business trip in 2 weeks. It always sucks when he isn't home. The house just feels out of balance. The dogs don't know what to do and I always have a hell of a time sleeping... Not to mention our IVF protocol will have begun at that point in time...

**You know... I keep seeing a commercial for First Response Fertility Tests. Part of me is intrigued by it. It claims to be able to tell you if you CAN get pregnant. My second thought is HOLY SHIT! Can you imagine the emotional damage if one of those tests were read wrong... WOW... Heartbreak city.

**I don't want to go back to work today. I love being home. I know it sounds like it I'm a hermit or something. But, I'm just a homebody and home is where I feel best... Being with my hubs and my pups... It doesn't get much better, except when we can add a baby to the mix!! ;)



I had a hell of a day this past Friday. I don't even want to go into it. After a solid 17 hours of sleep from Friday afternoon through Saturday morning all I came away with was that I MUST find a way to relax. I MUST find a way to let things roll of my shoulders. I MUST find a way to leave stress behind.

It is imperative that my mind and body be as streeful as possible over these next few months and hopefully longer. I wish that I could afford to take a leave of abscense for the next 8 weeks. But, alas that is not in the cards.

Please pray for me that I will find the strength to just let go... :(


Losing my Religion?

I've teetered back and forth for years now. Am I Catholic or am I not? I've been through the whole gamut, communion, confirmation, etc. But, since my dad's death in 2007, it hasn't been about whether or not I was Catholic. It's been about whether or not I actually believe.

I have crosses, bibles, rosaries even some Holy Water (somewhere). But, it's been hard. As if my father's death doesn't plague me enough seeing as we were never able to make amends, the constant trying and trying to get pregnant with no success has really been draining.

Several times I have called my mother and expressed my feelings toward religion and belief. She has always listened and end the end told me to just pray. He answers things in his own time. Trust me, I get it. There is a lesson to be learned in all of this. But, if it's patience He's trying to teach us, I gotta say... I really can't get too much more patient. Your patience wears REALLY thin when everyone around you has already had a baby. We love our friends and family and everyone's babies. But, we don't want to be the couple that everyone feels sorry for.

OK, I'm done rambling... I haven't been to church in years. Except for the random baptism or wedding here and there. I still remember everything. The prayers, the motions and the requirements. I've been toying with going back. Rick really isn't super comfortable in a Catholic church as his family is Methodist, but it is my goal to raise our children Catholic. Plus, I don't want a long drive to a Methodist church that I feel comfortable in. So I informed Rick tonight that we (or I) would be going to 10 am mass this Sunday.

I feel like I need to go back to my roots. I feel like I've been lost for so long that maybe this is what He has been trying to tell me. Maybe he wants me to come back so we have that relationship again. I need to feel the closeness with Him through this process. Our IVF is so important to me. To us. It's our last resort. Our final hope. And we're placing it all in Him.


Kathy and I have known each other since our middle school days. We never hung in the same circles and didn't become friends until we were 23. Kathy is the best friend I've ever had. We were married a year apart and we always have a blast when we're together with our husbands.

Kathy and Scott began TTC right before they got married. They just figured they'd have a honeymoon baby. Shockingly we've been on this infertility roller coaster together since 2005. Their journey has been much different than ours. Scott was diagnosed with severe Male Infertility and they were told they only way they would ever get pregnant would be with IVF/ICSI. They went through their first IVF in 2007 with no results. In early 2008 they did a FET (Frozen Embryo Transfer) with again, no results. In May 2008, they went through another IVF cycle that ended in a BIG FAT POSITIVE!! They had beautiful Lily in February 2009.

Rick and I are just a few steps behind them. You see, we never thought that we'd be heading down the IVF route either. It was always in the back of our mind that IVF was a last resort. We're finally at that last resort. We are putting all of our faith in God and the wonderful doctors at our clinic.

Kathy and I had both been to ALL the clinics together when they landed at another facility that neither of us knew existed. Rick and I switched once they got their BFP. We've never been happier. I'm so glad that Kathy and Scott have been through this. It's a rare thing when you can talk to your best friend and have this same exact situation. It's been amazing to have their support.


Our lil' Science Expierement

Our journey to our lil' science experiment began last Friday. With that, I had my initial blood work done to check various levels of my thyroid, FSH, estridol, and a bunch of other crap I can't remember...

Today, Rick was home to receive our shipment of meds. I knew it was going to be a lot, but I really never expected to come home to the amount of stuff we received. And for your viewing pleasure... Please note... I didn't take everything out of their boxes because I was too afraid to mix stuff up! LOL

Tomorrow we have an injectables class... Now, I've already taken plenty of shots in all of our previous attempts but, apparently, it is imperative that they show me how to inject the Lupron into my thigh. I just want to point out that combined with my Gonal-F needles I have over 100 needles staring back at me.

Today's arrival really makes this impending IVF seem more real. So will tomorrow when we walk into the doctor's office and they demand $8800 from us... There is a check I never thought I would need to write... It will hurt, but the end result will be so good... We both can only hope and pray... :)


Acupuncture or Bust...

It has been three long weeks since my last acupuncture appointment and I really missed it. I've been a steady acupuncture patient for the last year. My pracitioner specializes in fertility and my BFF used her while going through her IVF/ICSI cycle and ended up pregnant with her beautiful little girl.

In most of the research that I have done, coupling acupuncture with IVF increases the chances of a pregnancy by as much as 65%, which is HUGE... acupuncture can also increase the chances of a live birth by as much as 91%. I have such high expectations for this IVF. I hope that I'm not setting myself up for disaster. Our RE had a long conversation with us about the chances and how their numbers this year so far are even better than 2008 statistics. We left feeling great but we remain cautiously optimistic...

Tonight was my first night back and it was great. I left feeling so relaxed and hoping that my cycle starts any day now. My pratictioner poked me in a few different places to help the process along. I usually end up starting within 24 hours of her assistance...

**keeping my fingers crossed that AF shows up soon!**

I've become so impatient to get this moving along. Part of me hates that I'm going to be injecting the crap out of myself in the middle of the hot ass summer, but the other part of me just wants to get this over with and move on with everything.

On another note... I sat down with my boss the other day and explained the process of what will be going on and that during the ET (egg transfer), I might not be able to give ample notice about the time that I will need off. I know that a lot of people try to keep all of this on the DL with work, but I feel that it is necessary to keep my boss in the loop so that she can make ample arrangments if needed. Anywho... Signing off for the night...

ta ta for now...