Three Lines Of Hope

As most of you know, I was put on Letrozole a few months ago. Per Google, “Femara (letrozole) is a non-steroidal aromatase inhibitor (lowers estrogen production) used to treat breast cancer in postmenopausal women. Femara is often given to women who have been taking tamoxifen (Nolvadex, Soltamox) for 5 years.”

OR

Letrozole is used frequently as an infertility treatment. It is a recent addition to the drugs that are currently used for fertility treatment. This medication is a helpful aid to induce an egg to develop and be released in women who are not ovulating naturally; this is known as ovulation induction.”

The things we do to become mothers is insane, I am so aware of this. However, I was put on Letrozole to help aid in ovulation; one pill per day during days 3-7 of my menstrual cycle. I went in for blood work and it showed that this dosage did absolutely nothing for me.

He amped up my dosage for my next menstrual cycle by doing 3 pills per day, day 3-7 of my cycle. My doctor asked for me to come in for a vaginal ultrasound to see how that dosage worked for ovulation and he had nothing but wonderful news! Thank God, by the way. This medication has caused me to break out SO BADLY and become seriously exhausted. So the good news is worth all of the annoyances.

He saw that my left side of my Fallopian tubes showed wonderful signs of ovulation forming. I also had these very necessary lines that usually form during ovulation that an uterus should form to properly house a fertilized egg. He had high hopes and said we need to plan our time together according to my days of ovulation because of how well I reacted to this dose.

He also mentioned that we will be doing this for three months. If I get pregnant, great! Call and start that journey!

If during those 3 months I seem to not be getting pregnant, our next step is to talk about insemination. Either way, we have a solid plan! That makes me super excited. I hope it happens naturally, of course. However, if it happens at all, that is what matters to us.

We are finally super hopeful for the first time in a very long time. I mean, VERY long time. It has motivated me to be healthy and try to be active for at least 30 minutes a day. I’m building a comfortable home for a perfect baby so let’s hope it takes!

Keep sending good vibes, prayers, love, support to us…we appreciate it more than you will ever understand! I feel like it has been helping immensely!

Clean, Lift, Repeat.

I started at a new gym literally .2 miles from my job. I walk to and from there at lunch. My goal is to work out for about 30-45 minutes for 5 days. Weekends off. Unless I want to do yoga or walk my dogs at that time.

I also started using a personal trainer this week. My first free session was last week and had a second one on Monday. My actual trainer and I will begin on Saturday. I am pretty excited about. Nate is thinking about joining a gym as well. Someone close to the areas he works at. This is a big deal.

We tried out CleanEatz. It’s a restaurant dedicated to making an selling only clean food; fruits, veggies, lean meats, smoothies, etc. It has a meal plan service. We tried it and actually enjoyed the meal we had in the restaurant. We decided to try the meal service this week and so far it has been pretty good. Though, I have to say I have had one of their meals for both lunch and dinner and I am getting a little over it. I think I plan to make something of my own tomorrow for lunch.

I’ve been better about my general self care. Reading again, journaling and planning again, volunteering, trying to enjoy each moment that life throws at me.

With all of this,  I lost 4 lbs in a week. The motivation I used to have that killed 40 lbs of fat seems to be creeping back into my system. I will continue this at this level because I feel if I overthink it or over analyze everything, I will drop it like a hot potato again.

For the health of myself and our future child that we hope to have one day, I cannot afford to go back to not being motivated.

Sometimes I Don’t Like to Form Full Sentences.

No period. No pregnancy.

All of it leads to mindless actions because of too much on my mind.

Swapping anxiety and depression meds with ovulation meds.

Exhaustion and confusion.

Mental breakdowns. Crying. Crying fits. Worry. Stress. Pimples. Cramps. Bloat.

Period. No pregnancy.

No disaster of the one I thought I created.

Day one of ovulation meds. Done correctly.

Period. Period. Period.

Continue the waiting game.

Too Much Prodding.

Friday was my HSG test. The horrible test where they insert dye through your vagina and take an x-ray of your uterus, fallopian tubes, etc. Let me just explain the horrifying experience this test caused.

So I had to go to the outpatient area of the hospital. I was to arrive a half hour ahead of my appointment time for pre-registration even though someone had called me to register AND pay my co-pay over the phone, but sure, I will arrive a half hour earlier than needed. I legitimately sat around for about 45 minutes with one woman who came out to have me fill out a few lines of a sheet and then not come back until a gentlemen who worked at the hospital came up to me and asked if I had been helped yet. I told him “Well, sorta. A woman came out to have me fill out something and then hadn’t come back. I have been waiting for about 20 minutes since then.” He said “Huh okay, let me go check for you.”

He was awesome. Honestly, everyone I interacted with from the moment I walked into the hospital and even during and after my test, seemed extra nice to me than usual. Almost like the hospital staff had a nice talking to from HR or something. Normally no one at that hospital is that nice but hey, I enjoyed it.

I finally got called back by a really sweet nurse. She had me undress from the waist down and put this super odd robe on top. I walked from the dressing room to this giant x-ray room. It was cold, bright, and uncomfortable. There was another nurse in there along with my Dr. Nothing was prepared when I walked into the room and awkwardly climbed on top of the large x-ray table. Thankfully, the sweet nurse had brought in some warm blankets for me while I sat there super awkwardly, naked from the waist down and making sure every inch of my nakedness was covered up with the blanket. Sense a theme of this yet? Awkward.

My Doctor came from behind this wall and he looked so annoyed at the staff, but welcomed me with a warm and comforting smile as he prepped for everything in front me. Now, up until this point, my nerves were going crazy. I wasn’t sure what to expect for this test, what the results could be, and honestly, he was a newer Doctor to me. I knew of him because he was a Doctor at the same office I had been going to and heard such great things about him, but I normally try to go to female doctors for most of my medical reasons especially a gynecologist. That was not an option for me this time. So here I am, half naked in a cold, medical room, with more than two people, about to experience this test I had nothing to expect with a new male Doctor all while they were prepping for the test in front me. It was already so uncomfortable and nothing was injected in my vagina at this point.

Finally, the Doctor had me scooch to the end of the table while I am awkwardly sitting over the bed with my legs dangling (I did this while I was watching them prep for everything). I finally got to the edge and laid down. This is the part, I will skip details on because it is just too much, but basically I had several instruments inserted about five times, stuff injected as I flinched a few times because everything was so awfully painful and irritating, just sitting there while we waited AN ENTIRELY LONG TIME for the radiologist to make her sweet time down to our room to let us know if everything was good or not. The dye and test itself felt like things were being pulled on and tugged from the inside. It made me feel like I had to pee so bad, but it was burning and irritating. I felt pressure from the inside and I dont know if this is from all the moving around I had to do to get in the right position for the test or the instruments or what, but it felt like a bit of pressure on the outside too. It was TERRIBLE.

After the extremely long wait was over, she finally arrived to our room to only say (and I shit you not…) “Oh, I hate this machine. This is the new one isn’t it? Yeah, I don’t know how to work this one…”

Seriously. I mean if this is your profession, you’d think YOU’D MAKE AN EFFORT TO FIGURE OUT THE NEW EQUIPMENT, YOU PSYCHO! But… I digress.

After another unnecessarily long wait, about 10 minutes and 3 people, they figured out how to turn on the machine and make it take a one second photo of my uterus. My Doctor was so pissed. He kept it together really well, but you could tell when Dr. Radiologist tried to attempt small talk during the wait of how to work the new machine, he was short with her and annoyed, but he did it with grace. I was impressed. I would have snapped.

Finally, after waiting, scooching up the table with all these instruments inserted and all (yeah, that was embarrassing), he took a look and said everything looked healthy and promising! Fallopian tubes, uterus is healthy, perfect shape. He felt like it was a really good sign. After the embarrassment, awkwardness, TEARS, and waiting around, I am just so grateful for such positively good news!

I had my follow up appointment today as well. I had to get a vaginal ultrasound…(I know, I am over it too already).

Today was still promising news, but not awesome news, but not terrible! I have some cysts on my right side (which I knew about), but a super healthy left side. I was able to find a picture of what it looks like (see below). They found some indication of healthy lining thoughpcos and some signs of ovulation. The ovulation follicles he saw were only about a cm but it would be best to have about 2 cm or more (something of the sort, I am trying to remember all of the information and sometimes it is too much for me to remember). He wants us to still try, but he upped how much of the Letrizole dose I will be taking for the next time I get my period (assuming I do not get pregnant this time around).

In two weeks I am supposed to get my period, if I do not, I am to take a pregnancy test, and if it is positive, call the Doc for an ultrasound to confirm pregnancy. If it is negative, call the Doc to send over a RX of Provera (the drug that brings my period forward). Once I take my Provera and once I get my period, I take the new dose of Letrizole to force on ovulation, and the process repeats itself. If this goes on for 3 months without any results, I am to go in for a follow up appointment to see what our next steps are.

Pray, pray, pray like I will, PLEASE. I beg of you. I need the prayers. I appreciate them. I am grateful for them. We are reaching our limit of failures. We want some positive news. News that will turn into what we have been wanting and dreaming about for a very long, long time.

I also want to say THANK YOU to everyone who reaches out to me privately and share their stories or even to say that they are thinking of us and keeping us in their prayers. It makes the frustration and pain we go through each time a negative sign shows up on a pregnancy test a little easier to bare. I appreciate the fact that you are taking the time and exposing the emotional baggage you carry in your every day life to open up to me. I want you to know it helps me and I hope this blog and talking to me helps you. That is why I do it. Anyway, I am exhausted. I hope your night is filled with lots of happy dreams and restful sleep for a positively happy day tomorrow!

Hysterosalpingography…Say That 5x Fast!

I hope everyone had a truly wonderful and relaxing Thanksgiving Day! I sure did. We ate a lot and laughed just as much. Christmas is around the corner and we plan to visit my family. I am looking forward to that. That time with them is very much needed right now.

Anyway.

At my last appointment with the new doctor, he decided to put me on a 10 day worth of Provera. Provera is the drug that forces my period on. I spotted very minimally on Friday (the 29th) and it went away until Tuesday (12/2). Well, I had called the office to see if I should be worried about the fact I only spotted (this was before my period came back full force on the 2nd). The reason I worried was due to the fact that this round of Provera was supposed to bring on my period so we could do the HSG test. I think I briefly discussed this a few posts ago, but quickly…

An HSG test is short for Hysterosalpingography. This test, according to Google, “is an X-ray test to outline the internal shape of the uterus and show whether the fallopian tubes are blocked. In HSG, a thin tube is threaded through the vagina and cervix. A substance known as contrast material is injected into the uterus.”

This test is best done on day 2 of your menstrual cycle (woohoo…) and at hospital. Making this test happen involves three schedules, mine, the Dr. and the hospitals so it can be quite difficult. So that is why I was a bit concerned. Well, by the time the nurse got back to me (which was today y the way), I had gotten a full period and our Dr. was out of the office at a different location. They set up the HSG test for next Friday and a follow up on that following Monday. Waiting on confirmation of all of this from my Dr. of course. But at least now it is on the books somewhere.

He also put me on 5 days of Letrozole. I looked this up and it is actually used for a few different reasons. The main one is used for helping breast cancer as part of chemotherapy…

The second is for fertility. (But, still kinda scary.) It gets taken day 3 of my period for 5 days. It is supposed to help bring on ovulation. He said that it has a better success rating with woman struggling with PCOS or other ovulating issues. Keep your fingers crossed!

Also, send prayers to us about this HSG test. I need it to be clear and healthy and positively good news so we can move forward that I am praying we can.

Happy Thanksgiving!

I thought I’d check in in the wee hours of Thanksgiving. I have had a lot of people private message me that they are thinking of me and Nathan during our struggle. Sending us wishes of hope and prayer and just kindness. Truly, that is more appreciated than anyone could possibly imagine.

We’ve also recently found and took in a stray puppy. This poor thing was 5 lbs, ribs poking out, dirty as could be, just super miserable and weak. We felt for the poor babe. We decided to keep her. She is sweet, feisty, wild, funny, smart, and fits in well with our other two sweet dog babies.

During a time of trying to get healthy for a possible future pregnancy, she was a welcome distraction. More than that though, she is loved and now a part of the household. Almost like she has always been a part of us.

I picked up a cookbook that is directly veered for PCOS woman. Next week I plan to make some of those recipes. I think I also would like to start making meals with veggies only for at least once a week again. I think it will be a good way to jump start our healthy turnaround.

I also started to talk to a personal trainer about cost, time, etc. that I met from work. I think in the beginning of the new year, I plan to try that out. I need motivation. The only way I can do that is with another person either by my side going through the same struggle as me or someone pushing me to get through my struggle. I haven’t had much success with finding people who will stay committed with me so I think I need to get someone to push me and make me cut my bullshit out.

If I don’t make some changes, I will never be a mother. I can’t keep doing this to myself. I can make some healthy changes and HOPEFULLY they will turn our issues around at least half way. If we still are struggling, least I know it can’t just be my weight. Looking for positives in the most crumby areas, but if I don’t, I will just be miserable. And who wants to be that? Anyway, I am rambling at this point.

I hope everyone enjoys their Thanksgiving! Eat, drink, laugh, make memories, enjoy your loved ones company, and just be happy! 🙂

Oh, The Possibilities

We had our visit with the new doctor this past Thursday. It went well. It was a very quick, but productive and positive doctor’s visit, I have to say! We left with a lot of hope.

We basically just asked him what our next steps would be, how we’d get there, and we listened to every detail he had for us, which was A LOT.

Our plan for now is for me to get a HSG test done on day two of my next menstrual cycle (oh, the joy… *nerves start ramping up thinking about it again*) If you do not know what a HSG test is, don’t feel bad, because I didn’t either. Per Google, a HSG test or Hysterosalpingography is “an X-ray test to outline the internal shape of the uterus and show whether the Fallopian tubes are blocked. In HSG, a thin tube is threaded through the vagina and cervix. A substance known as contrast material is injected into the uterus.”.

Basically, they will shoot dye into my tubes to do an x-ray and see if I have any issues with my Fallopian tubes. Our doctor did mention that a lot of times woman with unexplained infertility get this test done as part of their research and end up getting pregnant after it. He doesn’t know for certain, but suspects it may have something to do with the flushing out of the tubes the dye provides. He hopes this will be a happy coincidence when I do it, but the hopes aren’t up.

This test has to be done on day two of my period because if there is a slight chance I am pregnant, they do not want to disrupt the pregnancy by doing this test. It literally makes me sweat thinking I have to do this test while on my girly time, but I understand why we have to. It just makes me break into a sweat every time. My next menstrual cycle starts in exactly 9 days (maybe). That is if my PCOS decides to work with me this month. I might go three months with the same consistent pattern of my period and then go without for a few months, then repeat. So it is all dependent on my next period.

After the HSG test is complete, depending on his findings, I will be put on a medication like Clomid (the name has left me at the moment of the drug he wants me to use), but it will boost up my ovulation. I will have to go into the office pretty frequently for them to tell me if I am ovulating or not until we get a positive showing of ovulation.

Then after that, we will go to the next step. IUI, IVF. And if those don’t work, we get sent to a different specialist. Let’s hope and pray that we do well with plan 1. Our doctor was hopeful and positive that we will be just fine in his hands. That we will have a positive situation. But, let’s keep saying those prayers because I have THE  worst luck and I do not want to jinx anything.

I do have to say though, I am choosing to be positive in this situation. Leaving that office on Thursday, I did not feel so weighted down. I am choosing to roll with that.

 

Sometimes Life Happens

And that is why it has been months since I have written here. I am sorry that I suck..

But, I figured I would update on our journey. As of right now, it has been the same old stuff just on a different day, however tomorrow we will meet with a fertility specialist to see what our next step is.

A few weeks ago, I was told by my gyno office that I somehow missed a last follow up from when I miscarried. It has been MONTHS! Like about the last time I posted on here probably. I thought it was odd, because I have EVERYTHING on my phone calendar and I know I would not miss something this important for anything. But since I had to do my yearly exam anyway, they did it all at the same appointment. Thankfully, all is good.

But we still wanted to get to the next step in trying to conceive a healthy baby so my gyno  put me back on the meds to help me push along my menstrual cycle since she thinks our issue is the fact that I do not ovulate either very much or not at all. Then she helped us set up a time and day to meet one of the fertility specialist in their office. That day is tomorrow! We are both very anxious and nervous so let’s hope something positive comes from this new meeting.

I promise I will keep the blog updated with all of the new information we discover.

Choosing to Change Nothing is a Choice.

It’s been really hard lately. The last couple of months have felt so dreadful and weighing heavily on me. As if a giant boulder has been sitting on my chest making it difficult to breath. June 21st was supposed to be my due date. It took a lot in me to form words in this blog for months now since we miscarried, but the dreaded due date has made it even worse.

The only reason I have caved and wrote this post is because I had a really awful day today. This day had nothing to do with our loss other than the constant thought of what has yet to happen successfully, but that is something that occurs in the corners of my brain anyway. Nope, this day was just especially shitty because of the every day things; work, people, people at work, exhaustion, possible cold brewing up, etc. etc. But days like these can be dangerous too. I get into a bad mood, it forms into this giant black cloud that lingers over me all day, and then I get home and burrow in a nest of blankets on the couch and just…think. This kind of thinking usually leads to me wanting to cry, quit my job, and sit in my PJs and not give a shit all day for the rest of my life.

Tonight’s thoughts were about how annoying those stupid email alerts one may receive from baby websites that tell you how far along one may be in their pregnancy or what should be happening during this week with their new baby. Yeah, those fucking suck. I have tried NUMEROUS times to unsubscribe to those emails and it’s like they find joy in my misery. The email reminders keep showing up. I have decided that a boxed turd would be wonderful to send to them but then I decided against it when I couldn’t find the address.

I don’t know; I just feel like I have lost myself. My motivation, care, and whatever hope I had inside of me has dwindled to absolute nothing. I find it hard to muster up energy and care to go to the gym, eat right, listen to people, be around big groups of people, put my makeup on. I know, it sounds like depression and it is. I have one tiny little sliver of hope left in me, it keeps flickering faintly like a dimly lit flame on a candle. Every now and again, I do try to spark it up, but it lasts for a little bit and then it just flames out.

Tonight I did have some last minute spark up. I was about to jump in the shower to get ready for bed and decided that I randomly wanted to work out. I did 15 minutes of work out and then decided to hop on here real quick. So I guess not all of my motivation has dissipated.

I know this sounds like a bunch of ramble and just weird, but I finally have had enough crying, self doubt and self hatred. If I want something to change, I have to get up and do something about it, otherwise changing nothing is the choice I have made for myself and my life and honestly this is NOT the life I want to live. I am just so over being sad and hopeless.

I think I will start to post one goal or motivation to accomplish for the next day in order to help me move away from the dark cloud. Tomorrow’s motivation is to work out for 20 minutes tomorrow. It can be any kind of constant moving about, but it has to be for 20 minutes straight. Someone keep me accountable…

A Christmas Update(Sorry, it’s not joyful)

I left you off with a pretty somber post last time. I’ve been trying to get back to you about the aftermath, but not only has it been incredibly busy with the holidays, it has still been difficult to think about. I will admit, it has gotten slightly easier, but it still makes tears well up in my eyes when things come up on the TV or if someone says a specific thing and sometimes it may not be anything to do with it and it still happens.

I last left you with the vivid and disturbing image of me crying and praying to God that all of my pain would end on our bathroom floor. The days following that was still so emotionally draining and mentally exhausting that I took off from work for a few days.

Once I was able to somewhat function, I called my doctor and they set up a follow up appointment to come in for an exam and lab work to be completed. This would see how everything had passed and to ensure that my body was healing as it was supposed to.

I would then set up another two week appointment to complete lab work. They would take my blood to see where my hormone levels were. The doctor explained to me that I would be on pelvic rest until my blood work showed I was at a normal hormone level. Pelvic rest consists of no sexual intercourse and no tampon usage. If my hormone levels were still showing signs of a pregnancy and I was active, it could cause infections or if I did happen to get pregnant again, the fetus could be in danger as well.

These two week lab work sessions occurred twice more until finally the last one showed I was back to my normal hormone levels and the pelvic rest was lifted. Thank God. That was this past week. Do you know how fucking sad it is to go in to the OB with a once occupied cervix to an empty one while walking down the hallway to witness pregnant women all over the damn place? That first trip back right after the miscarriage was the most painful. Constant reminders of the failed attempt at a family you’ve been wanting since you were old enough to want a family.

And to make it even better, guess what I got all on my own without any medication to prompt it? My period. I truly don’t know what I did to offend God but I wish She would let me know so I could make it right… At least I know I can get my period on my own again. I guess that’s a good thing. I wonder if my pregnancy made my hormones somewhat normal. That would be a positive to this entire awful experience I suppose.

Anyway, I have been getting better, I swear. I started up the gym a few weeks ago with a friend from work and had another friend join with us and honestly, that has been my saving grace. Going to the gym, trying to get back to those healthy roots I was so used to and getting back to writing, and just back to my old self has helped a lot. I have been trying to keep my every day life and future tasks in order for me to focus on the things that truly matter, to help aide in growing our family.

I also threw myself into having a great Christmas even though you’d think I would want the complete opposite this year, but honestly, between the miscarriage and not being able to go home to PA to be with my family, I really could not afford to focus on my awful emotions. I needed to focus on the things that made me happy instead like Christmas, seeing my friends and family’s faces when they open up the gifts we bought them or enjoying delicious food and wine with the ones I love, seeing my dogs excitement when they get their new dog toys or surprising my husband with the little gifts and fun activities for his Christmas Eve birthday. If I don’t focus on the things that make me truly happy, I would wallow in my own self pity and drown in it. I really couldn’t afford to do that to myself any more. So I focused on Christmas. Could be way worse.

All I can say is that this entire experience has brought Nathan and myself much closer. The little things that used to annoy us don’t seem to bother us as much. We give each other more compassion and understanding with things. We never had an issue with communication, but we definitely talk more than usual. And man, lots of cuddles. It’s how we’ve been getting through the last weeks. I know we are looking forward to the New Year. We’ve already decided to keep trying and when it happens, it happens.

Merry Christmas.