Thursday, August 28, 2008

How is Starts

Having my first child with no problems and the old fashion way, IVF is incredible. What doctors have learned to do to help people who struggle with fertility is amazing. It truly is a wonder that anybody ever gets pregnant on their own. What actually has to happen within your body was way beyond anything I ever learned in high school sex education class.

It really starts with a lot of bloodwork and testing. They check your uterus, your fallopian tubes, your husband, etc. After the millioneth blood level test that comes back you may or may not know what you are dealing with. My issue (beside extreme stress of losing my son) was "low ovarian reserve" HUH??? Most people are aware that we women are only born with a set amount of eggs. That is all we are going to get, we do not continue to produce them as men do sperm.

Maybe I wasnt born with that may to begin with or I used them all already?!? So I was on the low end of normal, my AMH (Anti-Mullerian Hormone) level was 7. Not great, but workable. You start the treatment it starts with going on the pill. Doesn't make much sense does it? Yep, they want to be in control of you cycle. No more depending on Mother Nature alone.

Once your IVF cycle has been set you get this overwhelming box of drugs and needles sent to your house!! I had to sit down when I opened it, I could not believe I was going to use all of those needles. How was I going to do this? I didn't, Jeff did. Bless my husband!! The first shot he had to give me IM (intramuscular) he almost passed out. Whew!! Once he saw there was NO WAY I could do it myself he came became my shot hero.

If you are fortunate enough to go thru the 12-14 days of 4-5 shots a day at very specific times and make it to retrival you are blessed. I chose to cancel my first retrival, I only had 2 mature follicles. This time it looked great.

We retrieve and they grow in solitary confinment in a petri dish. For those of you that have no idea what your children looked like 5 days after fertilization, please see this.

This two grade 1 AA 5 day blastocysts. Crazy that this is where we all started from.

God is truly AMAZING!
So then you get to transfer stage, 5 days (or 3) after retrival. They put these beautiful embryos into your uterus. Then you get to wait. It is the most painful part.
So you have already my post of which I describe that I am not a patience person and cheated. This is what I got from the doctor though.

I wanted to believe EPT and ClearBlue Easy, but this really made me feel better. My HCG level on Day 11 (one day early) was 70.7. Anything over 25 is pregnant. Day 13 HCG level 151. They want it to at least double every day. So far so good.

We go back Wednesday, Sept 3 for another blood test. Then Sept 10th, our first ultrasound. We will be 6.5 weeks pregnant.

Stay tuned. I know this information is rivoting for most of you, but I can say I searched and searched for this information for nights as I was beginning this IVF journey. It is truly an overwhelming, emotional, heartwrenching, on your knees praying, life altering experience.
Good Luck to anybody and everybody that is going through this or is thinking about. God Bless your journey as he has ours.

Thank you LORD, you have truly Blessed us.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


I have not posted "our full story" yet, but the people reading so far know what it is. I have started it, but it is very long and emotional and have not been able to finish it.

What is a HUGE point in our story is infant vaccines. Before I get into this don't read if you think or are offended by a very personal opinion and experience that will more than likely not mesh with yours.

There has been so much increased press on the autism link over the last year with Jenny McCarthy going public with her story. There are lots of families that have always considered to be "earthy" or "granola" that did not immunize their children. This week alone there have been two articles on the web, and . I was so angry and flabbergasted at the comments made by some of the vaccinating parents. I don't pass judgement onto them, just prayer.

So, this is MY blog and MY opinion is the only one that matters here. I will not vaccinate my children according to any government posted schedule. I will not be forced by a doctor, school, media, daycare or play group to vaccinate my children.

MY child died 12 hours after his 4 month immunizations. 12 hours!!!! He was born at 41 weeks (not a premie), he was 8lbs. 4 oz., he was still breastfeeding, he slept on his back with no blankets or toys in his crib and he had an Angel Care Monitor (please check out if you know a pregnant mom). He WAS NOT a SIDS baby. I don't care what they tell me.

So the parents, doctors and government officials that pass judgement and call "non-immunizing" parents selfish, look down at your child and be glad she/he was not one of "the good outweighs the bad" scenarios. That is what the CDC shared with a police officer involved in a case when an infant died after their shots. "What do we tell the family?" "We are aware of the risks involved with vaccines, but the good outweighs the bad"!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I guess that person got to go and kiss their kids good night and wake up the next morning and was very glad that it wasn't their child that fell into that risk group.

Bitter, is that what you are thinking. You are right, I am bitter. I have an opinion about vaccines, I don't push it on other people and barely share when asked. It is a PERSONAL decision for parents to make for their families.

Do your research. Start by checking out VAERS, Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System or the National Vaccine Injury Compenstion Program. Or just google vaccine related infant deaths. You will be (or should be) SHOCKED at what you will find. The government is well aware that vaccines are not safe for every child, but "the good outweighs the bad."

I am going to leave this there tonight, am all worked up and angry and need to calm down to get ready for bed. Thank you for reading and hopefully, not judging.

Monday, August 25, 2008

My Other Angel

I am an animal lover. Most all animals, some I like better at a distance, but I still love them. If you are not one of those people you will not relate to being "in love" with one. It is amazing how they become so many things to you. They love you NO MATTER WHAT!!

We had dogs growing up and in college. They were all great and special to me, until I got Riggs. He was a real person living in a dog's body. He knew every emotion I had and reacted to it accordingly. A dog is not only a man's best friend, but a woman's too.
The hard thing about all living things is that they die. Most times for me long before I am ready to let them go. Although it is part of life, it is still a diffucult one to grasp being the one left behind.

It is hard to think back to a time that he wasn't around. August 1995, one good thing that happened in August. My piggly wiggly came into this world. August 23, 1995 - December 22, 2007. I miss him everyday, Happy Belated Birthday, Riggs.

God is Glorious

There is no way I can count the ways, there are so many. I sat in church on Sunday and prayed and promised God that I was going to make the committment to walk closer to Him. To live as a better example to His Word, to Him. I know I am going to stumble and have to continue to ask for His forgiveness, but it is my goal to have God as my leading light. The reason I make every decision.

I forwarned you that I am not a patient person. It was a question that was asked in Sunday school. Take a piece of paper, on one side write an attribute you posess and on the other, one you don't. We had to volunteer a word in class and everybody had to decide which was which. Mine were detailed and patience. hmmm, let's figure out which one is which?

So, back to patience (or lack of it) I felt awful on Friday. I was crampy and my back was killing me. I panicked. I ran to the pharmacy and bought a PG test. I know, I was only 8 days past transfer. WAY to early. I took it anyway.

A faint positive line, but it was there. I was estastic, but way nervous. Jeff was going to kill me. So I toddled home with a secret in my heart and got thru the night. I decided you were supposed to test with first morning urine so I did another one Saturday morning. Again, a faint line. I broke down and told Jeff. He was sooo mad:-) (not really)

Since I struggle with getting things through this THICK skull of mine. I took another one Sunday after church. YEA, a much stronger line. Ok, I must be pregnant. I called my favorite nurse, at home, and she was as excited as we were. I get to go in early!!!!

We get to the doctor early bird this morning, unannounced and to a shocked staff. Once they found out I cheated, well I got to get my blood drawn. They confirmed my neurotic taking of tests with their own POSITIVE test. My HCG levels are good for being to early to test and have to go back on Wednesday for a redraw!!!!!

Please continue to pray for us, we are not through this yet.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Now it is a Waiting Game

Waiting is something I have never been good at. Holidays, birthdays anything that involves a gift I can barely contain myself before I give it to the person. Cooking, I am always checking on whatever it is to see if it is done.

These twelve days (7 have passed) seem to be the LONGEST days. Is there really only 24 hours in a day?

I am scared though. I feel like we have so much riding on the results of the blood test on Tuesday. It has to be positive, right? Probably anybody and everybody that has gone thru fertitlity treatments has been here at one point or another. I actually think I am imagining things. Am I really having to go to the bathroom this much? Am I hungry again? How many hours did I sleep last night (between potty breaks), I am exhausted? I am kinda nauseous. Are those period cramps or implantation cramps?

I have driven myself CRAZY, hoping and praying for a positive healthy pregnancy with twins.

And the only thing I can do is.....WAIT!!!!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

It's a Numbers Game

If you really think about it everything comes down to numbers. Your phone number, your address, your income, your birthday, how many children do you have, etc. Before I had my son that last question never bothered me. We hadn't started our family yet. Since I have lost my son, I DREAD the question. I was never sure how I was going to answer it because I knew that he was real, he was 17 weeks old when we lost him, he was my son, I was his mommy. Now I dread the numbers, the dates - his birthday, his angel day.

Now going through the IVF process we are back to numbers. How many shots, how many days, how many blood draws, how many ultrasounds? It didn't work?!?!? Start over....

So we started over. More shots, more blood draws, more ultrasounds. This time 8 follicles were retrieved. All 8 were mature and fertilized, we had 8 eggs. The doctor warned us that it is common to lose 30-50% of those before transfer. We lost 5, but had 3 perfect blastocyst to use. After much discussion we decided to transfer two and freeze one.

At 10am, August 14th we transferred two beautiful perfect blastocyst embryos. Now we wait for 12 days. We get a blood test, when we get a positive, because it will be positive. We have prayed and prayed and prayed as has everybody we know. We have to get the numbers back to make sure it is (and it will be) a valid healthy pregnancy.

All about the numbers, I am a numbers person normally. I am a banker, you would think I would be used to it. This numbers game has been overwhelming., exhausting and emotionally draining.

I look forward to the 6week ultrasound for the doctor to give me the blessed number of TWO babies on the ultrasound. Those numbers will be so sweet to my ears.

I know that our faith in God has waivered with the loss of our son, Walker, but I find myself being more drawn to him daily. I have always thought I was in control of my life and my decisions. I now realize that I have never been in control and as hard as that has been for me to accept it, I have. Some days I forget, but am quickly reminded that He is always in control. So the control freak I have always been has surrendered myself to the Lord. He works wonders and miracles and I look forward to see what he has in store for us next.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Waiting Game

Patience is not a strong point for me. I need immediate knowledge, reaction, answers, etc. God is definately at work in my life, teaching me that good things come to those who wait. So we wait.

Saturday, August 10th we had our egg retrival, they retrieved 8 (EIGHT) eggs. With reserved excitment and still swaying like a crazy drunk from my anesthesia we went home. I did what I was told and went to bed, even with a house full of Jeff's family here. My favorite nurse called to check on me later and gave the news (act surprised when the dr calls tomorrow:-)) that all eight looked like they fertilized!!! More contained excitement and LOTS of prayer.

Now we wait until they are ready to transfer which could be from tomorrow to Thursday. Hopefully, Thursday since that makes them the most viable, blastocyst stage. Since I was already off for vacation, we were supposed to be in Michigan visting home, I sit at home on restrictions, waiting and praying.

Hopefully, my favorite nurse will sneak me some information later today.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

IVF Update

We have potentially 10 viable follicles (that is what they are called at this point, not eggs or embryos). That is good news for us. Last time we only had 2 mature follicles and canceled the procedure. My blood work is good and everything is scheduled for 9:30am Saturday, August 9th. We are excited, but guarded. We know anything can and does happen. So send us all your positive energy and prayers. We will be blessed with lots more healthy children to the "S" family. (Our last name starts with an S:-))

Wednesday, August 6, 2008


I have no idea on how to blog or if any of this will make sense to anybody. Life has been tough the last two years and I can finally think straight some days and need an outlet to vent. Sometimes it is happiness that I feel guilty having, sadness that is a normal part of my existence, anger life is so unfair, grief that is the pit of which you seem like you can never get out of or just my crazy life on a daily basis with my husband and two crazy dogs!!!

Thank you for coming and checking it out. It may not be like other blogs that you read or that I read, those people are amazing with their feelings. This is for me, I need to verbalize my loss, my struggles and know that I will be ok when it is over.

I will post later my story, the quickest version I can later. Two years of history to bring you to today may take longer than I think, but what the heck we have the time and space.

Please pray for us as our IVF is scheduled to be retrieved on Saturday!!!! We are excited thru the ups and downs to becoming parents to a child on Earth, to be a brother or sister to our heavenly angel, Walker.