Monday, July 27, 2009

16 Week Belly Shot and Update

Well, I was officially 16 weeks as of yesterday! WooHoo!

I went to the Dr. today for my 4 month check-up. My cervix is nice, high and closed and I've gained 7 lbs. so far! She said I am right on track. :)

Baby A had a heartrate of 152 and Baby B had a heartrate of 150. It took awhile to get Baby B's because he/she was moving. :)

The funniest thing is that my belly is measuring equivalent to someone pregnant with just 1 baby at 24 weeks. :) I am going to be BIG by December. :)

Here is my belly pic:


Thanks for checking in and for the continued prayers!

Love,
T & A and the twins

Monday, July 13, 2009

14 Weeks Update & belly pic

I've sorry been a little MIA the last few weeks. There really just hasn't been much to report. I'm officially 14 weeks as of yesterday and officially in the 2nd trimester! WooHoo!

I had a lot of strange cramping on Friday so I called my Dr. and described what was happening. I had actually just called to talk to a nurse to make me feel better that it was normal, but when I decsribed some other symptoms I was having, she called my Dr. and they had me come in anyway. My Dr. told me they don't take any chances with twin pregnancies, and even if they don't think there is anything to worry about, they would rather be safe than sorry. She gave me the typical "there are a lot more complications associated with twins, so we want to see you ANY time you have odd symptoms again." I love my Dr. She actually has triplets of her own, and completely understands everything that comes with a high risk pregnancy. She said she's not just a Dr. ....she actually lived it too. It makes her very easy to talk to.


She checked my cervix to make sure it was still nice and closed etc. I also got to hear the babies' heartbeats. Baby A was 150 and Baby B was 159. They wanted them to be between 140-165 at this stage....so they were right where they needed to be. I go back to the Dr. in a few weeks for my 16 week check-up.


The big news is that I've gained about 3 lbs. so far! WooHoo! I had actually LOST a pound in the first 12 weeks and was a little worried about it, but my Dr. was not concerned. If you think about it, how could I have possibly gained any weight, when I had been throwing everything up, including water. So I gained about 3 lbs. in 2 weeks........and am expecting it to keep piling on. :) Adam was laughing at me that I was excited about gaining weight. He said it's odd to hear a woman actually excited to gain weight. My belly is getting bigger literally by the second.


As for how I'm feeling. I'm exhausted all the time and am peeing every 15 minutes, but other than that and the occasional bout of nausea, I feel pretty great. :) I am feeling a lot of "flutters" going on in there and they get stronger everyday. I swear I have felt a few kicks over the last week or so. I just can't wait for them to get more consistant and stronger.


I am including belly pics starting at 10 weeks, 12 weeks, and now yesterday at 14 weeks.







We are so blessed and so lucky to have all of you to share this with! Thanks again for always being here and for all the prayers.


I think of my friends who are still fighting to become mothers EVERY DAY and pray that they're dreams come true very soon.


Love always,

T & A and the buns

Thursday, June 25, 2009

12 week ultrasound

We had our 12 week ultrasound today! (I will technically be 12 weeks on Sunday)

Everything looked great! Baby A has a heart rate of 174 and baby B has a heart rate of 167.

They are both measuring right on track and were moving all over the place in there! I am definitely going to be getting kicked a lot when they get bigger! I can't wait :)

Baby A was being shy during his/her 3D picture and had their arms crossed over their face and their legs crossed.....like "don't take my picture." Adam thinks Baby A is a girl. :)

Baby B found their thumb at one point and started sucking on it. Too cute! Baby B was head banging too, so we're convinced baby B is a boy. :)

We did the NTS scan today where they give you your odds etc. of the babies having down syndrome and a few other abnormalities. They measure the fluid at the back of each babies neck and then prick my finger and compare a few things between the measurements, my age, and the blood work. We should get the results back in about 10 days. They measured GREAT though, so the ultrasound tech and the Dr. didn't seem concerned at all. They like it to be less than 3......anything over 3 can sometimes suggest an abnormality. Baby A was .8 and Baby B was 1....which they thought was excellent. Hopefully the blood work will come back low risk as well.

Here are a few pictures of the ultrasound!

This is Baby A - 3D being "shy." You can see the little arms in an X over their little face...and their little legs crossed too.


Baby A

Baby B - 3D - arms over face too....apparently these babies don't like getting their pictures taken. They better get over that real quick! :)

Baby B with his/her leg in the air.

Overall, it was a great day! I will post some 12 week belly pics on Sunday!

We feel so blessed right now and I thank God everyday for these precious gifts. Adam and I are cherishing every minute of this experience and are taking it one day at a time.

Thanks for always being here!

Love,
T & A and the buns

Sunday, June 14, 2009

10 Weeks Belly Pics

As promised, here is my 10 weeks belly! (I'm going to be huge, but I guess that's because there are 2 in there.) :)


As always, thanks for being here!

Love,
T & A (and the twins)

Thursday, June 11, 2009

High Risk OB Appointment

We had our appointment with the high risk OB today and it went very well! He was wonderful and very patient with us while we peppered him with questions......Questions including one from a very concerned Adam...."Will I ever get to have "relations" with my wife again?" To which the Dr. busted out laughing. Just one of the reasons I love my hubby so much, but I don't think he got the answer he was hoping for with all the issues I've been having. Poor guy. Oh well, he'll survive. (Can you hear the sympathy in my words?) ha ha.

I have had a few more bleeding scares since the ER visit and he could tell we were very concerned. He ordered us an ultrasound today and got us in right away.

We saw the babies today and finally got to HEAR their heartbeats!!!! It was so magical! Baby A has a heartrate of 176 and was wiggling around in there, and Baby B has a heartrate of 171 and was moving his/her little arms. I will be 10 weeks on Sunday and they are measuring on track and looking good! I would post the picture, but honestly, they still look like little blobs and the picture is not very clear.....I think the u/s tech was moving around when she snapped it because it's super blurry. I promise to post the 13 week ultrasound pics though!

They finally think they have located the source of the bleeding as well. I guess I have a small bruise where baby B implanted and it's working it's way out. It's outside Baby B's sack though, so it is no concern to the babies at all. Apparently it's pretty common and most women never even know they have one until they do an ultrasound. On the other hand, for some women, like myself, sometimes it tries to correct and heal itself which can cause bleeding and spotting. It feels so good to have a "probable" cause. They said it should hopefully heal itself by the 2nd trimester.

We went over everything from travel restrictions, pre-term labor, monitoring, diet when carrying twins, risks etc. A lot of scary information, but he kept re-iterating that he is giving us "worse-case" scenarios so we're as prepared as possible. As far as travel restrictions etc. he said it will be an appt. by appt. basis.

We are heading to Detroit to meet Amy's family over the 4th of July, which we are really excited about. He gave us the all clear, barring nothing bad happens at our next appointment before we leave, however we have to stop every 2 hours so I can walk around and stretch for at least 15-20 minutes. He also told me to listen to my body and if I'm tired, lay down and not push it. Fair enough. :) My energy level is pretty low these days, so I'll probably be a big party pooper, but we're just glad we can still go! Chelovich's, here we come! All 4 of us! :)

We talked about delivery as well and he said believe it or not, because of all the monitoring these days, about 80% of twin pregnancies make it to 37 weeks. They will not let me go past 38 weeks though no matter what, so if we make it to December 19th, they will ask Adam and I to pick the birthday and schedule the C-section that week. We would prefer to not be in the hospital over Christmas, so we'll plan on hopefully doing it on December 20th, being in the hospital for 4 days because of the C-section, and bringing the babies home on Christmas Eve!!!! How cool! :) Of course, God may have other plans on when these babies will come, but if we could "plan" it, that's what we'll probably do. :) What a Christmas gift!

So we'll have our next ultrasound around 13 weeks right before we leave for Detroit around July 2nd or so and then we won't have another one until our 20 week ultrasound.

As far as how I'm feeling, I'm definitely showing. It's not just bloat either, definitely babies. I will post a pic on Sunday at 10 weeks. :) Adam and I are excited to do a little maternity clothes shopping! (Well, let me rephrase, "I" am excited to do a little maternity clothes shopping, Adam will probably just come along to monitor my spending. :) )

My nausea and vomiting seems to come and go now, so I'm hoping and praying it's on it's way out! My lower back is killing me constantly because the Dr. said everything is stretching so fast, but he gave me the okay to use a heating pad periodically to help....which I am super excited about. I of course, asked him 8 million times if it was safe and he said since it was not on my abdomen and just on my lower back....it wasn't possible for a heating pad to even get hot enough to do any damage. Since I'm such a freak lately, I'll probably keep it on low anyway, but it's better than nothing! I've been craving apples and meat. I've never been a big fan of apples, but I can't get enough of them right now. I also haven't eaten meat since last November, but have become a carnivore again. There are probably 2 boys in there......causing me to want cheeseburgers, turkey and any other meat I can get my hands on. :) I'm exhausted all the time and literally have to lay down and take a 20 minute nap in the morning after taking a shower and getting ready. I'm THAT worn out.

Adam and I feel so blessed right now. We have so many friends who are still fighting to make their dream of becoming parents come true. We got lucky this time and we just pray that they all get their turn soon. Whenever I read of someone else's infertility struggles, my heart literally aches for them and the tears begin to fall. I have been there so many times in the last 4 years, crying myself to sleep while Adam held me, wondering why this was happening to us, not understanding and searching for answers. I still can't believe this is really happening to us and I am grateful beyond words for these little "miracles." (literally miracles)

These babies are already loved and cherished so much and I pray everyday that they keep growing and thriving until we can hold them in our arms in December.

Thanks for being here and for all the prayers!

Love,
T & A (and our 2 little miracles)
(and Tenley and Cooper of course. )

Thursday, June 4, 2009

First OBGYN Appointment

I was released to my OBGYN! WooHoo!

I went for my first appt. today after being released by my RE. It was actually a pretty uneventful appointment. Since I've already had so much monitoring and tests etc. all she did today was talk to me about delivering twins, answered questions and did some more blood work. I was kind of relieved since my cervix seems to be easily irritated, I really didn't want anything done that could upset it further. I've still had a few bouts of red bleeding.....but more spotting now, instead of bleeding like before our ER visit last week. My Dr. seemed completely unfazed by it and said that 1 out of 4 of all of her patients experience bleeding in the first trimester and are fine. She said it's actually about 50% of women carrying twins or more though, so that made me feel much better. :)

My official due date is January 10, 2010, however since it's twins, my "twin due date" is December 19th. (37 weeks) She said if you haven't already delivered, they will schedule a C-section at 38 weeks. (The day after Christmas!) Twin pregnancies are ALWAYS C-sections with her practice and I would be delivering at Delnor in Geneva. It's much riskier and stressful on the babies to try a vaginal birth because it's hard for them to turn etc. when they're sharing such a tight space with another baby, so they automatically do C-sections. I had hoped I would be able to at least try to deliver the old fashioned way, but I have so many friends who labored for hours, only to have a C-section anyway. To be honest, I would rather just do the C-section and be done with it. :) Plus, I want to do whatever is safest for the babies no matter what.

We don't have another appointment with my Dr. until June 29th, however since I am officially categorized as "high risk" we are meeting with their high risk OB, Dr. Pombar, next Thursday. He will determine when our next ultrasound will be etc. They monitor twin pregnancies more closely, so Dr. Pombar will explain what they will watch for etc.

All in all, it went well.

We are SO lucky to have all of you in our lives and we can't wait to share our journey to parenthood with all of you!!!!!

Please keep the prayers coming!!!!

Thanks for being here!!!

Love,
T & A (and the twins)

Friday, May 29, 2009

Emergency Room Visit

Last night was scary....VERY scary.

At about 9:30, I felt just "off." I can't explain it other than just "off." I'm sure everyone has felt that way before and know exactly what I'm talking about.

I went to the bathroom and before I knew it, I was bleeding.....I mean BLEEDING. Red, lots of it and with clots. (Sorry if too much information for some of the guys out there. :) )

I ran out of the bathroom and told Adam I was bleeding....not spotting.....bleeding. I started bawling and felt so nauseas, it took everything in me not to puke. Adam was pretty panicked too so we called the on call nurse at CCRM. She told me that believe it or not, there were several reasons I could be bleeding, but it didn't necessarily mean I was miscarrying. The only comforting thing I had, was I did not have any major cramping as I had with my other 2 miscarriages. She said we should just lay down, get off my feet, go to sleep and go in for my scheduled appointment the following morning. Yeah right. She also said that if we were really stressed out, we could go to the ER....which is what we did.

We got to the ER about 10:30 last night and got home around 2am. They did a pelvic exam to make sure my cervix was still closed...which it was, so that was good. They also did bloodwork which came back fine and what felt like a million years later, they did an ultrasound. They did the ultrasound and said the babies looked fine and had strong heartbeats, but they could not locate the source of the bleeding. That made us feel much better that the babies seemed to be completely oblivious to the drama that was unfolding around them. Little stinkers, giving Mommy and Daddy a heart attack.....I'm sure it won't be the first time. :)

Anyway, we came home, still nervous, but feeling better that the babies seemed fine....until this morning. The hospital faxed over the results from my ultrasound last night so I could take it with me to my appointment this morning. The measurements the u/s tech took showed that one of the babies was measuring a week behind where it should be. It said baby A had a heart rate of 167 bpm (good) and it was measuring 6 weeks 5 day....(not good, should be 7 weeks 3 days)......and baby B had a heartrate of 189 bpm (also good)....but measuring 7 weeks 1 day...should be 7 weeks 4 days. Panicked again, I called CCRM and since I was going in for bloodwork this morning anyway, they ordered another ultrasound.

I am SO glad they did the ultrasound. They explained that the ER ultrasound techs are not usually as thorough as they are and have been known to "mis-measure" the babies. This turned out to be true. My ultrasound this morning showed the following:

Baby A: 163 bpm (strong heartbeat) and measuring 7 weeks 3 days (right on track)
Baby B: 169 bpm (strong heartbeat) and measuring 7 weeks 6 days (a little AHEAD of schedule)

BOTH looked GREAT! Here is the new picture:


They've definitely gotten a lot bigger than their last picture. :)

They still can't locate the source of the bleeding and it seems to be tapering off now, but still there. My u/s tech this morning said that I do have some pockets of blood near my cervix, so to expect more bleeding over the weekend, but as freaked out as it will make us, just remind myself it's not coming from the babies. Ugh. The cause is still unknown.

My Dr. has officially put me on partial bedrest at least through the weekend and maybe through next week. I have my next OBGYN appointment on Wednesday.

So that's we're at....still needing lots of prayers and good thoughts for our precious babies!

On another note, I had my first dream about the genders last night and dreamt of a baby girl and a baby boy.......so we'll see. :)

Thanks for ALWAYS being there for us!

We love you all and appreciate your prayers and support more than we could ever tell you!

Love,
T & A (and our 2 little buns.......little stinkers :) )

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

First Ultrasound Pic - 6 weeks!




This is the first picture of our TWINS!!!!!

I was nervous about my spotting yesterday, so I talked to my nurse from CCRM and she said we could have our ultrasound this morning instead of waiting until Friday! :)

We were SO nervous going into the u/s this morning.....I felt like dead man walking. (I know.... a little dramatic) I honestly thought something was going to be wrong and was trying to accept it.

The nurses there were wonderful as always and greeted me with a hug and a lot of reassurances. We went into the room, Adam started to sweat and it felt like everything was in slow motion as she started the ultrasound. She knew we were so nervous and apparently we were making her nervous too because she's gotten so close to us.

She told us she wanted to look at the screen first and assess everything. She studied the screen for about 30 seconds.....which felt like an hour to us. She told us that she doesn't normally get emotional with patients because they're trained to disconnect themselves.......well, she started welling up with tears and turned the screen and said "everything looks perfect and congratulations, it's twins." I started crying and Adam got pretty choked up. She showed us the flickering lights on the screen which were their little hearts beating away. It was an amazing site and I couldn't stop crying with happy tears.

Baby A (on the left in the pic) is measuring right on schedule at 6 weeks 1 day with a heart rate of 122 and Baby B is measuring 6 weeks with a heart rate of 115. She said everything looked as good as it possibly could for this early in the pregnancy and that the heart rates would get faster and faster as the pregnancy progresses.

She also found a small sub-chorionic tear which she said is causing my spotting. Apparently it's very common in twin pregnancies and is no threat to the babies.

Our due date is December 20th because it's twins, but she said they could basically come at any time during the month of December.

My estradiol level is 1,038 today which is good. They like it to be over 300, so they are changing my patches to 3 every other day, as opposed to 4.

My progesterone was 11.8, so I am still on the same dosages of progesterone.

I go back for more bloodwork on Thursday, but they didn't mention my next ultrasound. I will probably find out on Thursday.

I can't imagine a better Christmas present than our 2 little bundles of joy!!!! We are over-joyed and so thankful to God for these precious miracles!!!!

Thank you for all of your support and love!!!!!

Love,
T & A (and our 2 little buns!)

Friday, May 15, 2009

Vomiting and Nausea Remedies

So remember how I was nervous because I wasn't feeling sick every day....only once in a awhile? Well, I am sick 24/7 now and vomiting about 10 times/day. I have a call into my nurse and will hopefully hear back soon.

Does anyone have any good remedies they used for all day sickness.....I don't know why it's called morning sickness because I have it ALL day and even woke up in the middle of the night to get sick. I'm miserable. (Still loving it in a twisted way though...because it tells me I'm definitely still pregnant :) )

These are what I've heard so far:
  • Brown rice with a tiny bit of cinnamon and sugar (from my Mom, which I actually was able to keep down for a few hours yesterday)
  • Toast, crackers etc.
  • Ginger Ale....which honestly makes me feel worse because of the carbonation
  • Preggy Pops....which I had to order online because I couldn't find them anywhere local. Hopefully they'll get here early next week
  • Suck on a lime with a tiny bit of salt.
  • Eat small meals throughout the day.......NOTHING sounds good and it stays down for 10 minutes, tops.

I'm hoping my Dr. can give me something for the vomiting. I feel like I've been hit with a severe case of the flu. I'm weak, dizzy and exhausted. No fever though.....so i know it's pregnancy related.

Anyway, does anyone have any other remedies they can share? I'm open to try anything at this point.....ANYTHING.

Thanks for being here!

Love,

T & A

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Prayers Needed

I debated posting this because I didn't want to worry everyone, the way I've been worrying.....but then I realized, we need some prayers.

I started spotting on Monday which has continued through to this morning. I am completely freaked out. I talked to my nurse at CCRM on Monday and she told me that it's completely normal when on progesterone vaginal suppositories. IShe said the suppositories can irritate your cervix and cause spotting. She said that unless it's a lot of bright red blood with severe cramping.....not to stress out. When you've had two miscarriages, which started with spotting....this is much easier said than done. I'm a mess.

I had to go in this morning to check my P4 and E2 levels anyway, so they did an HCG test as well. The nurses all assured me the spotting was normal, but I started sobbing during my blood test. They ran the pregnancy blood test and it came back at 9,364 which is right on track and right on target for where it should be. I don't have any severe cramping....just twinges and quick pains here and there which they said is my uterus stretching.....plus no major bleeding.....just a tiny bit of spotting. When you're pregnant though....ANY amount of blood is alarming.

My P4 came back at 13.8 which has actually gone up, which is a good thing. My E2 level came back at 868 which is great.

Anyway, I didn't want to make everyone else worry as much as we are, but we need extra prayers right now. God gave us this pregnancy as a gift and I am just praying every day that it sticks around for another 9 months or so.

Our ultrasound on May 22nd can't get here fast enough..................

Thanks for being here!

Love,
T & A

Monday, May 11, 2009

Question.....

How am I going to make it until Friday, May 22nd for our ultrasound? I mean seriously, how?

I am driving myself...and Adam, crazy. Every morning, I look for symptoms. I actually get upset if I don't feel sick during the day. My symptoms come and go. One day, I feel fine, and the next I am so nauseas I want to cry. No consistancy and it's killing me. I even POAS this morning to check my pregnancy test. It was an extremely dark line which made me feel better. Then I threw up after breakfast this morning and was SO HAPPY! I know, I'm psychotic.

This little stinker....or stinkers in there are already messing with their Mom.

Our ultrasound is scheduled for Friday, May 22nd at 9:00am. I am officially 5w1day pregnant so I will be 6w5days pregnant at the ultrasound....but whose counting.

They asked me if we wanted morning or afternoon that day....and I was like, um, are you kidding me? We'll wait 3 weeks from finding out we're pregnant, so what's another day? Yeah right, I asked for the earliest available appointment that day. So 9:00am on the 22nd it is.

I go back in on Wednesday for my P4 (progesterone) and E2 (estrogen) levels check.

Please keep the prayers coming!!!!

Thanks for being here!

Love,
T & A

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

3rd Beta

More good news!

My beta jumped to 819 today. They like it to double every 48 hours, so they would've liked to see it at 640, so 819 is GREAT!

7dp5dt: 47
10dp5dt: 321 (P4 = 10.5)
12dp5dt: 819 (P4=10.8) (E2=896)

The P4 (progesterone) might seem low so I asked my nurse about it, and she said that since I am on endometrin, which goes directly to the uterus, your blood level is always a LOT lower than what your actual P4 level is. They say to multiply your blood level by 6 and that's what your P4 inside your uterus is.....which is where it's the most important. :) So mine is estimated around 60....which is very good.

They won't do any more blood work to monitor my pregnancy hormone until the ultrasound, but they will continue the blood work to monitor my P4 level and E2 levels. I go back on Monday for the first monitoring.

As for me, I am still puking and not loving it quite as much as yesterday, but still loving it. I am also exhausted all the time and hungry, yet nauseas.....it's like I can't decide if I want to eat or throw up. I'll figure it out as I go. :)

Tenley also had her last eye surgery this morning. They successfully removed the oil from her eye and she is home recovering. She can see again and is a little groggy from the anethesia, but is otherwise doing fantastic!

Thanks again for all the love and prayers!!!! We are so overwhelmed with gratitude and love for all of you for cheering us on in making this dream come true.

Keep the prayers coming and we love you!

Thanks for being here!

Love,
T & A

Monday, May 4, 2009

Let me start with a picture........















Cooper and Tenley proudly spreading the news!

After 4 years……….(almost to the day we started trying)
2 IUI’s with Clomid
2 miscarriages
2 surgeries
2 hysteroscopies (tours of my uterus)
1 integrin 3 biopsy of my uterine lining
1 HSG
1 Saline Ultrasound for tubes
4 IUI’s with injectables
4 In-Vitro’s
Over 200 injections
Over 100 bloodtests
Over 100 doctor’s appointments
3 doctors
3 trips to Denver
And countless tears……………

WE ARE PREGNANT!!!!!!!!!!

We are over the moon and praying everyday that this pregnancy continues happy and healthy for the next 9 months. I figured out my due date for 1 baby would be January 10, 2010 and twins or more would be December 20, 2009. (Twins are full gestation at 37 weeks) These dates are an estimate, and we would find out our actual due date at the first u/s.

We told everyone that the test wouldn’t be until Wednesday in case it didn’t work out. We would’ve needed a few days to deal with everything before I would be okay to post. Just trying to protect our feelings and be realistic. I hope everyone understands.

I had promised Adam I wouldn’t take a home pregnancy test without him, but I caved. I think he knew deep down that I would cave, but tried to have faith in me. He had no idea I had been testing, which made it even more fun to tell him the good news.

I started POASing (pee on a stick) with the cheapie internet tests on Wednesday (5dp5dt) and swore I saw a faint pink line on the HPT. I chalked it up as an evaporation line because I was cramping so bad that I thought there was no way I was pregnant. I definitely thought af was on her way.

I woke up Thursday (6dp5dt) and felt sick all morning. I thought something might be up, so I took another test and the same thing happened. I decided to go out and buy a few different brands of tests to try to see if I could get a more clear result. I went out and bought a FRER (First Response early Result) and a CBE digital (Clearblue Easy Digital).

The FRER came up positive pretty quickly and I almost fell over in shock. I decided to try the digital one too which flat out says “Pregnant” or “Not Pregnant.”
“Pregnant” popped up and I started bawling….I think my dogs were afraid of me. I laid on the floor with them sobbing while they gave me kisses.















It took everything in me not to pick up the phone and call Adam at work. I held it in ALL day. I ran up to Osco to pick up a balloon and card for him. I walked up to the balloon counter and asked the lady for a “Congrats Daddy” balloon. She asked me if I had just found out I was pregnant. I started bawling and told her all about the fact that it had been 4 years and that I promised him I wouldn’t test so he had NO idea and how surprised he would be etc. After she came to grips with the fact that I wasn’t a sobbing lunatic, she had tears in her eyes and told me she had the chills. She gave me the only “baby” balloon they had and I came home….still in shock….and still crying.

I went home and laid out a bunch of IU baby stuff we’ve had along with the card, the balloon and the 2 positive pregnancy tests on the kitchen table. The picture below is what Adam came home to when he walked in from work. ☺ He was SHOCKED and kept saying “I don’t believe you.” We both had a very emotional hug and we couldn’t stop smiling…..or crying. It’s been SUCH a long road to get here and it is still sinking in. Adam is going to be an amazing Dad. He is an amazing husband and has been by my side through EVERYTHING. I honestly don’t think childbirth will faze him at all after what he’s seen. ☺










































He is my rock, my Soul Mate and now he is going to be an amazing father to our children. I am a very lucky woman and our children will be very lucky to have him as their Dad.

We called our families that night. Our Moms both cried, our Dads were thrilled and our sisters and brother were soooo excited for us, but we told them to keep it under wraps until our 2nd blood test today.

Since my blood test wasn’t scheduled until Monday, I called my nurse at CCRM, told her about my positive home pregnancy tests and begged her to move my blood test up to Friday. My nurse told me not to freak out on her if the number came back low…..because it was still so early. I promised I wouldn’t freak out on her, so she laughed and gave in. Our nurse, Dawn, has been so great through all of this.

I went in on Friday morning for my blood test and waited for the results. My blood test was at FCI since they do my local monitoring for me. I absolutely love everyone there and they all hugged me and had tears in their eyes when I walked in for my blood test. Apparently, when I had called the day before to schedule my appt., I told one of the nurses about the positive tests. She called everyone….including some at home….because they were all praying so hard for me. I adore them.

CCRM finally called that afternoon and told me I was definitely pregnant and my beta at 7dp5dt came back at 47, which she said was a very good number considering how early it was. Anything over 10 confirms a pregnancy. My progesterone was 15.8 which she said was also good. They will continue to monitor that throughout the first trimester as well. My 2nd beta was today and it came back at 321! (10dp5dt) They would’ve liked it to be around 150 or so….so 321 is GREAT! It could also indicate more than one little munchkin in there….uh oh!!!!! ☺ Dr. Surrey called us to congratulate us as well and said that based on our numbers he wouldn't be surprised if there's more than 1 baby floatin' around in there.......Adam's hoping for twin girls....or maybe even triplet girls.....hee hee.

7dp5dt: 47
10dp5dt: 321

I go back on Wednesday for one more beta test and then we wait for our ultrasound on Friday, May 22nd. That’s when we’ll find out how many babies we’re having. ☺

I feel nauseas, have already thrown up several times, am an eating machine and I am LOVING it. I am so bloated that I already look 4 MONTHS pregnant, not 4 weeks. I seriously can’t button any of my pants right now. There is something else that had gotten bigger as well….actually 2 things….that Adam is LOVING….not that I’ll let him touch me. Ha ha.

We still can’t believe this is really happening. We are both waiting to wake up from this dream. We’ve been here twice before and lost both pregnancies, so we’re cautiously excited. We’re trying to live in the moment and enjoy every second of this experience. I think we will both feel better once we see / hear the heartbeat(s) at the u/s. As for finding out the gender, we’ve decided to not find out if it’s 1 baby….but twins or more, we will definitely find out. We will need to plan and prepare as much as possible. Ha ha.

Please continue with the prayers! We debated on telling everyone so early in the pregnancy….but we kept it a secret the other 2 times and look where it got us. We figure we need all the prayers we can get right now and you’ve all been with us since the beginning…………we need your prayers more than ever.

One last thing, for those of you on facebook with us, please don’t post a congrats on our wall or anything…….for now. ☺

We LOVE you all so much and thank you again for the love, support and prayers for us and our little baby / babies. ☺ This baby / babies are already loved soooooo much!

Thanks for being here!

Love,
T & A
(and our little bun(s) in the oven….finally!) ☺

Monday, April 27, 2009

Meet our triplets















They are the most beautiful embryos ever as far as I'm concerned. They may or may not become babies, but we love them just the same. These are the 3 blastocysts we transferred on Friday. We have no idea which is which, but that's okay. Whether we become pregnant or not, we will always have this picture.

Isn't it amazing that we all looked like this in the beginning?

So as Adam posted a few days ago, the transfer went well. We arrived at 12:30pm for some blood work to check my estrogen and progesterone levels.

I had been drinking water all morning to make sure my bladder was full. We were checked into our room, where I took a wonderful and welcomed valium to help relax me and my uterus. The sonographer came in to do a quick ultrasound to make sure my bladder was full enough. It was VERY full, so she let me go and pee some out....a whole cup's worth. The hardest part is stopping mid-pee (try it sometime....NOT easy.....but I managed and felt much better afterwards.

Next, the embryologist came in to discuss our embryos. This is the most nerve-racking part because you have no idea what he is going to say. Is he going to say that we have 1, 2 or 3, or even none......and what quality are they?

The embryologist, John, was the same one I had completely lost it with sobbing on the phone when he had called to tell us we only had 1 quality embryo. This time, he said "I have good news this time" with a big smile on his face. He was probably thanking God that he didn't have to deliver bad news again considering my emotional history with him. Anyway, he told us that all 3 had survived the thaw. Anything over 75% is considered good. Ours were at 100%, 95% and 90% so we were really happy with that.

Next, Dr. Surrey came in to do the transfer. The funny part is that he has been our Doctor this entore time, calling the shots on dosages, protocols etc. for us, but behind the scenes because this was the first time we actually met him face to face. He was very nice and was pleased with our embryos as well. John wheeled this huge incubator into the room with a big screen on it so we could see our little embabies. Adam was allowed to take the picture above as long as the flash was off. They loaded them into the catheter and with ultrasound guidance of pushing on my full bladder, they dropped them right into the middle of my lining in the middle of my uterus. The whole process took about 15 minutes and was pretty quick and painless. I think the valium helped this time.

Dr. Surrey removed the catheter and I had to lay there for 45 more minutes completely still. After 45 minutes, they came in and told me I could finally go to the bathroom. I honestly think I peed for 3 full minutes.

I was on strict bedrest from Friday afternoon when we got back to the hotel until Sunday morning. My shower on Sunday morning felt so good. We finished our adoption paperwork...which took 4 hours, but it's ready to go if needed. We are ready to be parents either way.

We flew home today and per doctor's orders I had to use a wheelchair at both airports. It felt a little silly, but I was not going to risk walking the lengths of the airports when he told me specifically not to. I'm not allowed to lift anything heavier than 10 lbs. until the pregnancy test.

I am currently 3dp5dt (for those of you without a phd in infertility lingo, it means 3 days past a 5 day transfer) Our blastocyts are considered 5 days old at the time of the transfer. I am trying not to obsess over every little cramp, twinge etc.

I took some very important items with me on the trip. I took and wore my St. Girard necklace from my parents, my thumbring from my Gommers (which I held during the transfer), and my aromatherapy stress relief spray from Adam's parents. I also received some beautiful flowers from 2 of my very best friends, Kristi and Janna, which I kept right next to my bed to keep me smiling. I took turns smelling the stress relief and the flowers.

My very sweet and thoughtful friend Angelique had put together a care package for me before we left as well, which included snacks, a movie rental gift certificate and a hilarious book, which I loved reading.

I took everyone's love, thoughts, prayers and sweet messages with me and held them close to my heart, as I know Adam did as well. We feel so loved and know that no matter what happens at this point, we are very loved and supported.

Finally, I wanted to share something pretty cool with you.......
Adam and I decided to get out of the hotel on Sunday night since I was officially off of bedrest. We went out to dinner and decided on P.F. Chang's. We each received a fortune cookie at the end of dinner.....I cry everytime I read them.

Mine said "Nothing in life is to be feared; it is only to be understood." The other side says "girl." Adam's read "Adventure can be a real happiness" and the other side says "December." If we get pregnant, we would be due in late December / early January. If we adopt, we could definitely have a baby by December as well. The fortunes could mean us giving birth to a child or adopting a child.....but whatever the outcome we're excited to see what life brings us.....one sign at a time.

Thanks for being here!

Love,
T & A

Friday, April 24, 2009

Transfer Info - from Adam

People of the internet -

This is Adam. Tiff is currently laying horizontally and can't type, so I thought I would take the liberty to update everyone on today's big events.

Overall, today ended up being optimal conditions for us which was great. All 3 of our embryos were thawed and transferred successfully! Further, each of the 3 embryos were in great condition. The embryologist can tell you what % of the cells survived the thaw and 75% is really good. For each of our 3 embryos, we had 100%, 95% and 90% cell survival. Finally, the transfer went smoothly. So, it was a positive outcome on all fronts today. Now, we just sit back and hope we get lucky.

We got back to the hotel around 3pm Colorado time. Now, Tiff is trapped in bed until Sunday morning and can only get up to use the bathroom, brush her teeth, and wash her face. We didn't realize how difficult this would be. She's already tired of being confined to the bed. Further, I had to go out and buy some beer so I can make it through the next 36 hours as well. :-)

Anyway, that's all I have for now. If anything amusing happens on Saturday, I'll let you know. Otherwise, Tiff will blog again on Sunday when she can sit up straight.

Thanks for being here!

Love,
T&A

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Here we go!

We are here safe and sound in Denver.

I think the universe may be messing with me. We went to pick up our rental car when we arrived......turns out to be an orange mini-van. A mini-van? Come ooooonnnnnn!!!! Such a "Mom" car! We asked for a compact car.......a mini-van? Seriously?

We walk into our hotel and the first thing we see is a huge advertisement for a Mother's Day brunch coming up. I am usually a HUGE fan of holidays.......Mother's Day, not so much. The only good thing about Mother's Day is that we adore our Moms so much that we can at least honor them....and of course our Grandma's......other than that, as far as I'm concerned right now, it's one of the worst days of the year.

So our transfer will be at 1:30 tomorrow (2:30 Chicago time). We have to be there at 12:30 for more bloodwork and to get me prepped etc. We should be back to our hotel around 2:30pm and ready for bedrest. I will sleep off my valium and Adam will find some sports to watch I'm sure. Then it's bedrest for me until Sunday. My nurse told me that strict bedrest ends Sunday morning, but to take it easy. Dinner or a movie would be fine on Sunday night though, so that's what we'll do. We fly home Monday and it's on to the 2ww for me. I loath the 2ww.

I had bloodwork yesterday to check my progesterone levels. They like it to be higher than 6 and mine was 12.6 so we got a "very good" report.

So that's where we're at. We'll update tomorrow when we get back from the transfer. Please pray that oour precious little embryos survive the thaw and are welcomed home in my uterus! I want them to make themselves very comfy for the next 9 months.....even if it means triplets!

We have 3 blasts........from 3 cycles

Embryo #1: From IVF #1: PGD tested "normal", created in March '07...this little embryo has been transferred between 3 different clinics....little traveler.
None to freeze from IVF #2
Embryo #2: From IVF #3: Created on September 20, 2008........what would've been my brother Ryan's 30th birthday.
Embryo #3: From IVF #4: Created on March 3, 2009........created on my grandpa's (Gompers)birthday.

Please say a special prayer for each individual embryo. They mean more to us than you can imagine.

Thanks for being here!

Love,
T & A

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Last Shot

Is it wierd that I got emotional last night when I stuck myself for the last time? I never in a million years thought I would be sad about that....but I was. I just can't believe this is the end of the road for trying for a biological baby for us. Sticking myself with needles, doctor's appointments, surgeries, blood tests and procedures etc. has been our life for 4 years, that it's wierd to think about not doing that anymore.

I started my tetracycline tonight, which is quite the treat. I have to take it 4 times a day and it literally feels like it is tearing my stomach apart, piece by piece. The first time I had to take this medicine, I learned the hard way that you absolutely cannot take it on an empty stomach. I vomited and dry heaved all day and had to force myself to eat something to make it stop. It was miserable. I am still doing 4 estrogen vivelle patches every other day as well. I started the progesterone this morning, which is 3 times a day and am already starting my headaches that come with it...fun, fun. I also started my medrol tonight, but that's just once a day for the next 4 nights.....so not too bad at all.

I still can't believe we're leaving on Thursday. It's very surreal and to be honest, we're ready to get it over with. The transfer is always my favorite day, because I can say I am pregnant as soon as they put those little embabies back in my uterus and we bring them home....or back to the hotel in Denver this time.

I'm really excited that CCRM gives you a valium before the transfer. I've never had that before and have always gone without anything. My cervix is a pain in the butt and very uncooperative. You also have to have a full bladder during the procedure and they tell you to stay relaxed to make it go smoother........yeah right. I've never been able to relax for the other transfers so I'm hoping the valium will help. I mean, seriously, you try relaxing waiting for the embryologist to come in and tell you how many of your embryos survived and what quality they are, with a FULL bladder, with 8 people in the room, in stirrups, while they dilate your cervix while poking and prodding you with a metal catheter.......seriously, come on. Don't get me wrong, the transfer is by far the easiest part of the whole process.....but I think I just tell myself that because you're literally on adrenaline with excitement at that point. The day of the transfer you are PUPO.....in infertility language it means "Pregnant until proven otherwise."

Thanks for all the prayers and well wishes. We definitely need them. I can't thank all of my family, friends, and blog friends enough for all of your support while I'm being a "negative Nellie" as they call me at my old RE's office.

I went to church with my Mom this morning and I got a huge hug from Pastor Melinda. She married Adam and I and has known my family for a long time. She has been following our blog and sending prayers to the Big Guy upstairs for us, which means a lot. I'm hoping she has some kind of "in" with him that we don't have. :)

Thanks for being here!

Love,
T & A

Friday, April 17, 2009

Transfer Update

22 shots of lupron down and only 2 to go!!!! I'm also up to 4 estrogen patches every other day. The good news is that my body is responding. I went in for some more bloodwork and an ultrasound this morning. My lining is 9.5 which they said is "wonderful." Hey, at least they didn't say "perfect." :) My E2 level is 708, which is also right on track. So we're still all set for our transfer next Friday.....ONE WEEK from today!



So the wierd thing about only having 2 more shots left, is that it's my last 2 shots ever until we either have a baby or adopt one. It's still hard to believe that this is the end of the infertility road for us. 4 awful years and it's almost over. It's wierd that we've always had a "plan." Next time, we'll try a new Doctor, or maybe we'll try a new protocol....or we'll do special training on our embryos etc. ....this time we're done. Part of me wants to start sobbing with sadness and the other part of me wants to celebrate.

I had my support group last night and had a blast again. Lots of tears, but laughter at the same time. Those girls "get it" and it's so nice to have all of them in my life.

So that's where we are right now.

As always, thanks for being here!!!

Love,
T & A

Friday, April 10, 2009

2 weeks until Transfer

So my arms and veins were feeling pretty neglected lately so I treated them to some bloodwork this morning. It was my first estradiol check since starting the lupron injections and Vivelle estrogen patches. 15 shots down, 9 more to go. Ugh....I hate lupron. CCRM called to give me my results and it was 328.....which she said is WAY above what they like to see....but that's a good thing, apparently. There really isn't a maximum at this point, just a minimum. I would normally be excited about this, but I'm super bitter instead. Woo hoo....way to go....yeah. The only time I will get excited about test results are when they result in a baby.....yet, those are the only tests that don't turn out to be perfect.......

When I went in this morning for my b/w and to see my FCI nurses...whom I love.....they were really sweet about everything. Since we're technically patients of CCRM and FCI just does our monitoring at this point, they didn't know what was going on. I filled them in about our one little quality blastocyst and how we're transferring all 3 of our little embryos....one from every Dr. we've seen. One from Dr. Morris, one from FCI and now the one from CCRM. It's like a smorgesborg of blastocysts. I'm sure I just butchered the spelling of Smorgesborg....but you figured it out.

I told them we're not feeling very hopeful and that we will be filling out our adoption paperwork while I'm on bedrest after the transfer.....they told me they understood why I was being a "negative nellie" so they would be my cheerleaders.

So, I can't believe our transfer is happening in 2 weeks. Our last "try" for a biological baby is happening in 2 weeks......that's if our little ice-babies even survive the thaw. Wow.....see how positive I am? Honestly, stick a fork in me, because I'm done. I'm done with all the needles and the drugs, done with all the hope and disappointment, done with the financial stress and done with the tears. Just done. I am so bloated, I could survive in the dessert for weeks with the amount of water I'm retaining. I'm like the pillsbury doughboy on hormones.

Thanks for being here!

Love,
T & A

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Pure Estrogen Baby!

My "bonus" AF arrived right on time on Friday. I couldn't believe that my body finally decided to cooperate and follow the schedule CCRM gave me. My body owes me AT LEAST that.

So, I started my estrogen Vivelle patches tonight (CD3) and lowered my dosage of lupron. I'm sure our house should be a fun one (as if it could get any more hormonal around here) over the next few weeks with all the hormones flyin' around.

We finally booked our trip today too. We fly out on Thursday, April 23rd and come home on Monday, April 27th.

We went to a wedding in IN this weekend for one of Adam's friends from IU. You can almost read facial expressions and hear the questions running through people's minds when they find out you've been married for 5 1/2 years and don't have any kids yet. I was considering grabbing the microphone from the band and making an announcement like "Adam and I hate kids so we don't think it's a good idea that we have any" or "yes, married for 5 1/2 years and no kids....it's none of your freakin' business." I was actually pleasantly surprised that noone just came out and asked.....bless them.

Thanks for being here!

Love,
T & A

Thursday, April 2, 2009

People Story

Those of you who know me, know that I love my dirt magazines. US Weekly and People are my favorites. Anyway, I received this story from People in an e-mail. I love this story. It's so refreshing when celebrities are willing to share their stories too and bring awareness to infertility. Courtney Cox Arquette is one of them. She suffered miscarriages before conceiving daughter Coco on her 3rd IVF attempt. Nicole Kidman suffered several miscarriages as well. Those are just a few. Now Constance Marie is sharing her story as well.

http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,20269221,00.html?xid=email-peopledaily-20090402-20269221

They all have happy endings, but there are several that don't.

That song I posted earlier "I would die for that" says it all. I would die for a happy ending for us.

My biggest enemy these days is "hope." I can feel her creeping in every now and then....tapping me on the shoulder and whispering "you can't shake me because you want this so bad." Then I am reminded that she has always failed me in the past and I want to knock her out. Hope is not my friend. She has hurt us way too many times in the last 4 years and Adam and I are trying to go into this last attempt as unattached as possible. We both need to protect our emotions at this point.

I have my next support group meeting on April 16th and am already looking forward to it.

Thanks for being here.

Love,
T & A

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Last BCP

I took my last birth control pill last night! WooHoo! So now I am only taking my daily "hate" injection. My bonus af should be here on Friday and then we are 3 weeks and counting until the transfer!

Adam and I decided to bring our adoption papers with us to Denver, so we can fill everything out and have it ready to go when we get the bad news on May 6th. I will be on bedrest Friday, Saturday and Sunday, so it will give us something to do when we're stuck in our hotel room and sick of movies, TV and reading.

I had a rough weekend. I had a dream on Friday night that I found out I was pregnant and Adam and I were SO ecstatic, but then I woke up, realized I was dreaming and started crying. We were supposed to go to a birthday party for our friend's 1 year old son that night and I just couldn't do it. There were going to be kids, babies and pregnant people there, and I know it sounds lame, but I emotionally could not have handled it that day. My friend Lauren and her husband, Paul were MORE than understanding and it was very appreciated. They are such great friends.

I've been a pretty crappy friend lately. I've been so secluded. People have been reaching out to me in phone calls, e-mails etc. and I've been so selfish. I really need to start getting back into the land of the living. Sorry friends!!!!!

So, okay, the lupron not only makes me crazy these days, but it makes me have the craziest dreams. I could seriously give Speilberg a run for his money with the dreams I've been having. None of them have been fun or happy....with the exception of the pregnancy one. I woke up this morning shaking because I had AWFUL gut-wrenching dreams last night. Just so you understand exactly HOW scary we're talking here.....let me recap a few of them.

The first entire dream talks about a guy who was murdered. It's like there was a narrator in my dream talking....a creepy voice. This guy and his wife were hanging at a friend's house, when the narrator cuts in and says "when he went to get something from the pantry, a pillowcase was thrown over his head and he was waiting to be killed." It cuts back to the wife who is now looking for her husband and can't find him. The narrator voice cuts in again and says "How scared would you be if you had a pillowcase shoved over your head and you were just waiting for them to kill you, but you didn't know how or when it would happen?" "What would you say to your husband if this was the last time you would ever speak to him and the murderers gave you that chance?" So I woke up...trembling.

I finally fell back asleep only to have a dream that I was at my Uncle Larry's funeral all over again. I couldn't walk or breathe because I was sobbing so hard in my dream. The funeral was outside in a huge park and when I went out there, I couldn't find my family anywhere and had to sit by myself. The rest of the dream was me trying to frantically find my family. Instead of waking up trembling this time, I woke up sobbing.

You would think I had taken a hit of acid before falling asleep or something.

On another note, Tenley took her last pill this morning. She's still on a ton of eye drops, but this oral medication makes her sooooo gassy. It's awful. She's a little bomb dropper and Adam and I argue over who she snuggles with on the couch. We are so relieved that these pills are officially over!!!! :)

She seems to be able to see big things. Today is 3 weeks post-op....so hopefully she'll regain her full vision in the next 3 weeks.

Thanks for being here!

Love,
T & A

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Support Group

Sorry it's been so long since I've posted. There has been a lot going on.

I went to my first support group meeting last Thursday night and loved every second of it. There were tears yes, but a lot of laughter too. There were 12 women who all happen to be at different points in their TTC journey. It was great support and before we knew it, 3 hours had passed. I plan on going again this month and am already looking forward to it. It was nice to be surrounded by women who truly understand the emotional roller coaster all of this is.

One of the things that was mentioned during the support group, was the song by Kellie Coffey called "I would die for that." It's a song about infertility and I've already listened to it at least 25 times since yesterday and I still cry everytime I hear it. Adam and I listened to it for the first time together and he held me while I cried and couldn't believe how much every word "hit home" for both of us.

I found a link to the song, if you would like to listen to it. If the video is too much, just listen to the words. It's so powerful, especially for my friends who are fighting the fight with Adam and I.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JqfGqOx2iDQ&feature=related

The birth control pills are going as well as can be expected. I've gained 4 lbs. in 2 weeks and I'm crying one minute and laughing the next. Weight gain was always a fun little side effect of BCP's.....because I don't have enough to already feel betrayed by my body about. I start my daily injection of "hate" tomorrow night. (lupron) Can't wait for that. :) Poor Adam.

Tenley went to the vet this morning for her 2 week post-op visit. They took out her eye stitches....but the best news is that.....it appears that she can see a little bit! She can follow a toy if you move it from left to right and she can walk around without running into everything. This is just what they would hope to expect at this point. They told us big things at 2-3 weeks post-op and smaller things at 4-6 weeks post-op. Hopefully she'll be good as new in about 3-4 weeks. The only bad news is that some of the silicone oil they use to hold the retinas in place has leaked to the front of her right eye. Basically, she has to go back in for a minor surgery to get the oil out or it can cause "cornea adema." Lord only knows what that's going to cost us. :) All in all, we're just happy she can see something again.....and she is such a HAPPY dog. Lots of kisses and tail wagging going on. She's making up for Mommy's bad mood I guess. :)

Anyway, that's it for now. We're still set to travel to Denver on April 23rd, do the transfer on the 24th, bedrest from the 24th through the 26th and fly home on the 27th. I took 2 weeks off of work to just lay around and relax when we get home. This way when it doesn't work....I can say I literally tried EVERYTHING.

Thanks for being here!

Love,
T & A

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Transfer Meds are under way

Let's start off with some good news. Thank you so much to my sister Heidi for sending flowers for Adam and I and some special gourmet dog treats for Tenley and Cooper. That was SO sweet of you and a wonderful surprise. :)
I want to also thank my Mom and Dad, and sisters Sandie and Hallie for taking Cooper on Saturday for the day and wearing her out! She was so antsy being stuck at home with us and Tenley while she's recovering, that a day at Grandma and Grandpa's was just what she needed. She was EXHAUSTED and had so much fun. :)

Okay, now let's get down to business.....

AF arrived on Friday which was such a treat. Nothing like awful cramps after an awful week to just stick the knife in and twist it. :)

I remember when Adam and I were first married and wanted to wait a year to get pregnant. I was happy to see af and if she arrived late, it was a "scare." If I only knew then that we had built in birth control that we didn't even know about. I long for the naive days when I assumed that the first time we tried to get pregnant....we would. In fact, we figured out that the time of our last attempt at biological children with our embryo transfer in April, will be EXACTLY 4 years from the time we went on a cruise to officially start "trying." 4 years of our lives focused on starting a family and nothing to show for it except for heartache and bitterness. Unbelievable.

So I started birth control pills on Sunday night because it was CD3. Birth control pills are my arch-enemy. In fact, a more appropriate name would be "evil pills." I hate them and they hate me and they make me hate everyone and everything all at the same time. A lot of hate going around. One minute I'm laughing.....the next I'm crying...or screaming...or maybe even punching my pillow. It's not pretty.

I take these until March 31st, and starting on March 27th, I add my daily injection of my other arch-enemy, Lupron. I stop BCP's on the 31st, but continue the lupron injections until April 19th. So basically, a daily injection of "hate" for 24 days. Oh joy. Poor Adam.

In the midst of all of this, I should get a bonus af (nothing like an "extra" period to get the excitement flowing) on or around April 3rd. Once this happens, I will add in estrogen patches every day......PURE estrogen being pumped into my body through a patch on top of the "hate" injection. Hormones galore....but wait.....it gets better.

Starting on April 17th, I will add progesterone to the list of hormones. I will be doing that 3 times a day until the transfer.

Once the transfer takes place on April 24th, I will be on progesterone and some more progesterone....with a side of intra-muscular injections of progesterone until the pregnancy test 2 weeks later.

I'm basically going to be a big, giant, hormonal mess.

Tenley is doing MUCH better. The problem now is that she has her energy back and it's been really hard to keep her quiet. She has another appointment on Thursday morning to look at her retinas and see how they're doing. Hopefully they're regenerating and she'll be able to see in another 2-3 weeks or so.

We have received so many e-mails the last few days asking about Tenley and checking in on us to see how we're doing. My favorites are the ones that simply say "love you" or "thinking of you." It's not fair for us to expect anyone to be able to make us feel better or know what to say, and to be honest there really isn't anything anybody can say that would take away the pain of what we're going through. Just knowing we're loved is enough and means more than you know.

As always, thanks for being here!

Love,
T & A

Friday, March 13, 2009

Tenley - Finally some good news

I want to start with a picture of Tens the day we got home from surgery. Poor baby.
















Now after 2 days of IV fluids, 2 shots to control her vomiting / nausea, another shot to give her some pain relief, a spoonful of "force-fed" food and then some rice mixed with chicken bouillon and special food from the vet that mommy made at home......this is Tens now!!!!! This is how she welcomed daddy home from work.....and you can guess what came next....me bawling....happy tears this time. Isn't it sad that her eating and welcoming Adam home was the best thing that's happened to us in a long time? :) We'll take it though and are so happy she's feeling better!!!!!! Cooper is even happier. She's been so stressed out about Tenley that she hasn't been eating either....and she is one to NEVER miss a meal. She scarfed her special mixture down too, is playful again and all is well in our little family again....for now. :)

Now, let's hope she keeps the food down and gets a good night's sleep.....for both our sakes. :)















Thanks for being here! Future posts will be about fertility stuff again, as it was meant to be all along. :)

Love,
T & A (and Tens and Coop)

Tenley is home!

I just got back home with Tenley and she is on my lap as I type this. They gave her some more IV fluids all day and a really strong shot to stop the vomiting. They also gave her a shot for pain because it's very obvious that her muscles are sore. Everytime someone picks her up, she winces and whimpers. They also managed to get a tiny bit of food in her through a syringe. We are supposed to give her rice mixed with the special food they gave us periodically, a little at a time tonight. I can tell she still doesn't feel well, but she did wag her tail when she heard my voice and I took her from the nurse. So now we keep our fingers crossed that she will be back on the road to recovery in the next few days. My poor baby. I'm taking her back in the morning as well and they will probably give her one more shot for the pain she's in. I'll keep you updated.

Love,
T & A

Another rough night....

Tenley has not improved at all. They gave her IV fluids all day yesterday and we were able to bring her home last night. I slept with her again, or at least laid with her since neither of us actually slept and she is still miserable. She still can't stop vomiting and threw up twice last night and 3 times this morning. She is back at the vet today with more IV fluids and they are going to give her something stronger to settle her stomach before they force feed her. She needs to get some thing in her stomach, but she won't eat because she's so nauseas. She hasn't eaten since 6pm Tuesday night. I am waiting to her from her surgeon because the other concern is the vomiting could hurt her chances of her retinas re-generating and the surgey could fail because of it. I have gotten pretty snippy with the vets lately telling them that poor Tenley is going through hell and they need to stop her vomiting or she will go through it for nothing and she still won't be able to see. I want my sweet little Tenley back. I did get a few kisses in the middle of the night while I was petting her at 2am trying to get her to sleep. She was shaking when we walked into the vet and she could smell where we were. It broke my heart to hand her over to them again when all she wants to do is lay on my lap. She whimpered when the nurse took her....which you know what happened next....me bawling. They're going to call me in a little while to let me know how she's doing. I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Tenley Update

Tenley is not doing well. It was a long night for all of us. I got maybe 2 hours of sleep because the poor thing was so miserable and could not get comfortable with the e-collar on her head. The only place she is comfortable is next to me with her head and chin resting on my stomach. Cooper thought it was a big sleepover party and insisted on sleeping on my head all night.

I took her to the optometrist for a follow-up appointment today. She threw up on the way there and cries out in pain whenever she's picked up. She had projectile vomiting all over me in front of the Dr. and they immediately rushed her back for some IV fluids. She threw up again, so they gave her a shot to try to settle her stomach. They told me that it's been a LONG time since they've seen a dog this sick from anethesia and they do a lot of surgeries. So I start bawling in the vet. They tell me that they have to check for pancreatic inflammation which can happen from the amount of vomiting she was doing. It turned out to be okay, but she is in really bad shape. They called our regular vet and sent me over there. They were waiting for me when we got there and took her back. They are keeping her there today and maybe even overnight and are going to start her on an IV drip. The Dr. is going to call me around 4pm and give me an update, but I am allowed to call and check on her whenever I want. I took her favorite blanket up there and haven't stopped crying....again. All I do these days is cry and I'm starting to wonder when it will end. Hopefully soon. I'll update you again later.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Tenley's Surgery

Tenley had her surgery today. Everything went as "well as it possibly could and very smooth" according to the Dr. Her retinas were both in good shape still and easy to re-attach. Now her body needs to accept it and re-generate the "signal" endings to her optic nerve and she should be able to see. :) She was given an 80-85% chance of success with her right eye, and about 50-60% for her left eye. I know you're all thinking the odds are in her favor.....but we don't look at it that way......not anymore. We've been told that everything was perfect so many times and then crushed later on. Adam and I always seem to be on the crappy end of statistics with everything, so we're trying to be optimistic, but I'll believe it when I see it. She's doing okay, but pretty out of it. She's taking after her mommy with the amount of drugs she has to take over the next 3-6 weeks. She has 3 sets of eye drops several times a day and 3 other medications during the day as well. Thank God it's all in writing.

Her eyes are sewn shut 1/3 of the way to protect them. She will be in her kennel whenever we're gone to keep her and Cooper seperated. She hasn't been in her kennel since she was 10 months old, so she's probably going to be pissed.....but will hopefully forgive us when she can see again in 4 weeks. :)

Cooper has been an angel. We were really worried because she's still so playful and VERY demanding. She is the definition of bitch....she's a cute bitch, but a bitch nonetheless. We thought for sure she would attack Tens when we got home to play. She has been the sweetest little dog. She hasn't touched her once, except to gently sniff her and kiss her cheek.....so sweet. Tenley feel asleep on the floor because she can't seem to get comfortable with her e-collar on her bed or the couch and Cooper has completely left her alone. We can tell she's concerned because she just sits in front of Tenley and stares at her in such a loving and concerned way. We are so relieved. Cooper is usually such a stinker so we are so proud of her!

I am still in a complete fog. I had a breakdown with Adam last night that I really needed. I've felt like I was drowning in bad news and heartache lately, and haven't been able to catch my breath. I felt much better after Adam held me while I sobbed for 2 straight hours last night. He is such a wonderful husband. Sometimes, I have to remind him that he's going through this too and he needs to grieve too. I honestly don't know what I would do without him. I feel bad that I just can't talk to any family / friends yet. I know they love me, and I can't explain why I handle things this way. I just feel like I'm okay one minute and as soon as I start thinking about it, I start crying. When I talk about it, I start crying. When I get an e-mail, I start crying and it just never ends. I'm in such a weak emotional state right now, that I need to try to get stronger before I can handle facing anyone else.

I talked to my CCRM nurse, Dawn, tonight. Our embryo transfer date will be Friday, April 24th. We will be in Denver the 23rd through the 28th. I'm not even excited. I'm terrified, sad, stressed and everything else that comes with your literal "last chance" at a biological child.

I just really wanted to let everyone know that Tenley's surgery went well and we'll know if she can see again in 3-6 weeks.

Thanks for being here,

Love,

T & A

Monday, March 9, 2009

I'm sick of this shit

As you can probably tell, we got some really crappy news today. Out of 24 eggs, 16 original embryos and 13 that were still "normal" as of Friday....we have ONE that was quality enough to be biopsied today. Let me repeat that, ONE that made it to blast. We actually have 5 blasts....however, 4 of them are of the lowest possible quality you can have. The cells that would eventually become the baby, are completely in disarray.

So after bawling on the phone with the head of embryology lab and then bawling again on the phone with Dr. Surrey who called me personally because I'm sure John from the lab told him I was a disaster........we've decided to skip the testing on our one little quality blast. I mean, does it really matter at this point? If it's abnormal, it just won't implant. We paid $5,350 for this additional testing out of pocket and with our luck we would waste that money just to be told, with our luck, that's it's abnormal? They already biopsied it, but are going to refund us the rest, minus the cost of biopsing because they haven't shipped the cells yet. As I was bawling, I told Dr. Surrey we neded that money to adopt and it would be a complete waste. He agreed that at this point, we should just go ahead with the frozen transfer of our 3 frozens and be done with this shit....shit was my word, not his.

We went to CCRM because they are the best in the country and we were hoping to get some answers. I think we definitely got some answers....some really sucky ones....but answers nonetheless............we create crappy embryos together. Plain and simple. He said that neither of us is necessarily the "problem." Adam's sperm and my eggs just apparently hate each other. As individuals, they are each great, but they come together and just don't mesh.

We've decided to do a frozen transfer of our 3 embryos we have frozen. We have 1 frozen and PGD'd from IVF #1, another one frozen from FCI from IVF# 3 and now one frozen from CCRM from IVF#4. Basically, one from every Dr. we've had over the years. So now we wait for my period to start and start prepping for the transfer, which will be a lot sooner than early June now. Is there a chance, it could work? Yes.......but a much higher chance that it won't or i will just miscarry again. The sooner the better as far as we're concerned. The sooner the transfer won't work or our embryos won't survive the thaw, and our hearts can be broken again, and the sooner we can move on to adoption. Like I said, I'm sick of this shit. $25,000 down the drain with this ONE cycle.....at least with adoption, we pay $30,000 and we WILL get a baby out of it. We will actually GET to be parents.

In other news, I had to take Cooper to the vet this morning because she now has bronchitis. Just what we needed. I have one freakin embryo, a blind dog and now a bronchitis infected dog on top of it. Life just doesn't get much better than this.

Adam and I are requesting no calls today. Neither of us really want to talk....at all. Adam is stuck at work, completely devastated. At least I can be home and cry. He has to stay at work and try to get through the day because of meetings etc. He is trying to come home early, but doesn't think he'll be able to. I want to just shut myself off from the world for a little while and deal with this on my own. I don't want to hear anything about a plan for us, or there's a baby out there for us, or any of that crap. The bottom line is that all my life I've wanted to be pregnant and give birth to the man I love's baby and that's clearly not going to happen, so please just let me deal with this overwhelming sense of loss and deal with it on my own terms and in my own way.

Love,
T & A

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Tenley Update - Surgery Scheduled

Tenley's surgery has been scheduled for Wednesday at 11:00am. We have to be there by 8am so they can run a few tests and prep her for surgery. The surgery will be 2-3 hours long. She'll be in recovery for about an hour and we'll be able to bring her home that afternoon. Adam talked to the Dr. again this morning and we asked a few more questions. We feel very confident in the questions we asked. I researched the Dr. and we're very confident he will do a great job.

He's giving her a 75% chance of regaining her vision. The 25% failure comes in because what happens is that even though he can re-attach the retina, it's up to the body to accept it and re-generate it. Sometimes the body rejects it for some reason. The surgery can go perfectly, but for some reason, the body won't re-generate the retina once it's re-attached. I also asked if it was hereditary and he said there is not enough evidence to say yes. He said it's similar to humans where a child can develop a disease with NO family history of that disease at all. He has traced detached retinas back several generations of dogs before through breeders and more often than not, there is no history of it in the dog's family. Interesting stuff.

As far as one or two eyes, he will be able to tell us that morning, before surgery, if both eyes have a chance, or just one eye. Wednesday will be a long and stressful day. She should regain her sight within 3-6 weeks after surgery. Keep your fingers crossed for our little "Tens!" We just love her so much and want her to be able to see again!

There are no more updates from CCRM until Monday on our little embabies, but I promise to post as soon as I hear anything.

Thanks for being here,

Love ya,
T & A

Friday, March 6, 2009

Some pics from our trip


I thought I would add a few pics from our trip. :)

This is Adam....waaaayyyy too excited to stick that thing in my rear on trigger night. :)













This was what my stomach looked like the night before retrieval.....man, was I bloated and swollen. I hope the next time my stomach looks like this, it's because there's an actual baby in there...not just a bunch of eggs! :)






Before Retrieval.......














......and now the picture you've all been waiting for........While I was in the retrieval, Adam made a visit to "the room." This is his "view" from "the chair." Can you feel the romance? This is our reality....poor guy.



















After Retrieval....trying to give the thumbs up sign.....I don't even remember this. :)











Finally enjoying something to eat and drink! What was with me and the "thumbs up?" I think Adam was encouraging me. Too bad I puked all of this up about an hour later.....oh well.











The view from the balcony of the condo we stayed in. Not bad.












Nothing exciting, just a few pics from our 4th and final retrieval experience!
I am hoping to save all of this for our baby / babies one day!

Love,
T & A

Some fun news from today

I wanted to dedicate a special separate post to this, because after the awful couple of days we've had about Tenley and emotional couple of weeks we've had, I got some really great news today. My brother-in-law, Aaron (Adam's brother) recently got engaged which the whole family was so excited about. Adam is excited to be Aaron's best man and his fiance' Amy asked me to be a bridesmaid in their wedding today and it was just what I needed to make me smile today! I am so honored and excited to be a part of their special day! Thank you so much Amy! It means more to me than you know! Looking forward to June 12, 2010! Love you both!

Love,
Tiff :)

Day 3 Fertilization Report & Tenley update

CCRM called this afternoon with our day 3 embryo update. Out of our 16 embryos, we have 13 that are within "normal" range. They say "normal" if the embryo has between 6-10 cells and less than 20% fragmentation. So overall, we're happy with that. Now the big test comes as they develop over the weekend and we find out Monday how many were able to be biopsied, frozen and sent for testing. Some will be biopsied on Sunday and others on Monday. Our 2 frozen embryos arrived there safe and sound as well. One of them will be biopsied with the others on Monday and the other will remain frozen since it's already gone through PGD testing and was determined "normal." Our goal is to have 8 embryos make it to blastocyst stage and get biopsied for testing. Please say prayers and keep your fingers crossed! :)

I want to say thank you to my best friend Kristi and Jeff and of course their precious little Addie for the letter and homemade cookies they sent us to welcome us home! They figured that after eating healthy for so long, we needed some junk food. They were definitely yummy. Thanks Mansfields!

I also want to thank everyone again for all of the VERY sweet and encouraging e-mails we've received over the last few weeks. I know I've said it a million times before, but we are so lucky to feel so loved by our friends and family. I have made several friends online through my research and fertility forums who are battling infertility as well and it feels so great to exchange stories and words of encouragement with each other. It makes all of this a lot less lonely. :) THANK YOU to everyone who remains by our sides through all of this!

So, the veterinary surgeon called about an hour ago and I was able to ask a million questions so I will just touch on the main points. He sounded wonderful and was so great about answering all of them. He said that out of all the dogs that have the surgery, 75% of them regain their vision. The surgey is about 2 hours / eye. They can get her in next Tuesday or Wednesday if we decide to go ahead. She would have a 3-4 week recovery where she would have to be kept as quiet as possible. No jumping on furniture or even going up and down the stairs etc.....she doesn't really do any of those things right now anyway since she can't see so she would be okay. No playing with other dogs either. He was fine that we have Cooper, but said that they would need to be seperated if play time erupted. They could snuggle at night still etc.....but as soon as any play started, we would have to seperate them. So sad. :( It would be worth it though if Tenley can eventually see again. Within 3-6 weeks she should be able to see again.....but if her vision doesn't come back within 6 weeks....it most likely never will. She would get to come home with us the same day after surgery though which is nice. He said it's not a real "painful" recovery either. She would be on eye drops and other meds, but for the most part the meds would keep her pretty comfortable. She will have to wear an e-collar for 1-2 weeks, which should be interesting...since she hates wearing ANYTHING. The other thing he mentioned, without knowing her history at all, was that a common denominator with dogs who have detached retinas is that they are "toy shakers"...not just shakers, but violently shake their toys as if they're trying to kill the toy.............um, that sums Tenley up in a nutshell. She has ALWAYS done that since she was 8 weeks old. Wish we would've known. He said not to beat ourselves up about it though, because it's not like we could take every one of her toys away from her or something. Anyway, Adam and I are discussing everything again tonight. The Dr. gave us his cell phone number directly if we have any more questions, which I thought was so nice. I'm sure Adam the auditor will have more questions for him. :) We have to call him as soon as we decide and she will be scheduled for Tuesday or Wednesday since time is of the essence. :)

Please say some more prayers for Tens and our little embabies!

Thanks for being here!

Love,
T & A

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Apology

I wanted to apologize for my "whiny" post a few minutes ago. I am in a really bad emotional place today and it came off really whiny. I am fully aware of the fact that especially with the economy the way it is right now, there are people out there struggling to put food on the table to feed their kids and people with medical bills piled up from fighting life-threatening diseases and people about to lose their homes because they are unemployed and can't pay the mortgage. I sounded like such a whiny brat on my previous e-mail. Yeah, we were saving for a bigger house....but we're lucky we have a nice house as it is. Yes, we would love to be able to make love and bring a baby into this world instead of paying thousands of dollars to do so, like the lucky ones do, but that's just not what's going to happen for us so we've accepted it the best way we can. The bottom line is that even when life seems so unfair, we are very lucky at the same time. I have to have faith that Tenley will be okay and that we will be parents very soon. It just may not be the way we had hoped and planned for. :)

Thanks for listening,

Love,
Tiff