Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Day 6.

There's nothing to suck the air out of your balloon like the bill from the RE arriving. Why does IVF have to be so dang expensive and why do so few insurance companies cover it? Oh, well, never mind... God is our provider. He knows our situation and He will provide for us. Can't let the money scare me.

Super-duper tired today. Had a great time with some dear girlfriends last night! I am so blessed to have such wonderful friends. Thank you for loving me and supporting me.

Not much else today... not so much twinging today but just feeling like my abdomen is full... hopefully full of some nice looking follicles! Here are some more inspirational lyrics I heard on the radio last night.

We lose our way,
We get back up again
It's never too late to get back up again,
One day you will shine again,
You may be knocked down,
But not out forever,
Lose our way,
We get back up again,
So get up, get up,
You gonna shine again,
Never too late to get back up again,
You may be knocked down,
But not out forever


Just got off the phone with IRH!!! I asked if we could use the 2009 prices instead of the higher 2010 prices and the finance person said yes! God is so good!!! See, He is providing!!! This saves us ~$800!!! Thanks Father God!!!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Day 5.

Two shots down, and .... a lot more... to go :) I have to give a shout out to my husband. He is so amazing! Best darn shot giver in the world! The fun thing about Menopur is that it comes as a powder in teeny tiny little vials (Did I mention expensive? Oh, so very expensive!). It has to be reconstituted with NaCl solution and this often requires working with multiple vials. J is a pro - he handles it beautifully!

I feel it working... I feel it...

God gives me songs on the radio almost every day. I have a hard time sitting still long enough to always hear Him the way I need to - especially with Michael being so active these days. So, He sends me songs. Today He sent me the song Unwritten. I love this song - it gives me so much energy!

I am unwritten, can't read my mind, I'm undefined
I'm just beginning, the pen's in my hand, ending unplanned

Staring at the blank page before you
Open up the dirty window
Let the sun illuminate the words that you could not find

Reaching for something in the distance
So close you can almost taste it
Release your inhibitions
Feel the rain on your skin
No one else can feel it for you
Only you can let it in
No one else, no one else
Can speak the words on your lips
Drench yourself in words unspoken
Live your life with arms wide open
Today is where your book begins
The rest is still unwritten

I break tradition, sometimes my tries, are outside the lines
We've been conditioned to not make mistakes, but I can't live that way

Our lives can be so much more than they often are! We've gotta go for it! It may not turn out the way we plan, but I'm gonna live every moment! God's got a plan... I don't understand it, but I'm gonna live it... LOUD!!!!!!!!! I know I seem mousy and quiet a lot of the time, but I have to tell you, I'm a little wild on the inside ;)

Sunset last night... another gift :)

Monday, June 28, 2010

Day 4.

For fun last Thursday, a dear friend and I went to get pedicures. I've never had flowers drawn on my toes before, but I figured, what the heck! With all the "stirrup time" I have coming up, might as well have something that's uniquely me!

The Technical: The first injection last night went just fine. I did 300 units of Menopur on the right. Tonight will be 225. Dr. Awadalla has me on a seesaw pattern, so I'll continue to alternate those doses as well as alternating sides/sites. I had a small injection site reaction but it wasn't too bad, just some heat and redness. I was amazed how quickly my body responded and I've been feeling twinges all day. They don't hurt - they just let me know the medicine is revving up my ovaries.

The Emotional: I'm feeling good today. I've been thinking about a lot of different things. My old pastor (from New Orleans) posted this verse on his Facebook status this morning:

“Don't put your confidence in powerful people; there is no help for you there. When their breathing stops, they return to the earth, and in a moment all their plans come to an end. But happy are those who have God as their helper, whose hope is in the LORD their God. He is the one who made heaven and earth, the sea,... and everything in them. He is the one who keeps every promise forever.” (Psalm 146:3-6 OYB)

This really reminded me that although having people praying for us is vital, our hope has to be in God, not in somehow earning his favor. I know we all tend to think that if we do everything right, God will bless us. It doesn't work that way. I think I tend to do this so that I feel like I have some control over the outcome. But, I don't have any control. It's all in His hands. I still don't understand how God decides who gets to be pregnant and who gets to keep their babies. I never will. But, I know the One Who does. That has to be enough.

A little happy that Michael and Jason brought home for me yesterday! I am so blessed...

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Day 3.

Well, tonight we open the box and start the injectable medications. We try to do them at the same time every night, so 9pm usually works best... Michael's in bed and we have time to focus. I'm really lucky that Jason sort of likes to give me the shots. It gives him an opportunity to be part of the process. I can give them to myself if I have to, but it takes me a while to work up the nerve. Something about sticking a needle (even a small one) into your stomach is just unsettling.

It's been an unusually quiet Sunday for us... lots of naps and relaxing and I think it's been perfect to settle our hearts. I know my heart will flutter with that first shot... it is always a big reality check. Yep, we're really doing this!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Day 2.

Today, I returned to IRH for my first appointment of this round. It's always bittersweet to walk through those doors. Sweet because of the hope of another baby. Bitter that I have to be there at all... especially this time.

The Technical: They drew blood to test my FSH levels (FSH = follicle stimulating hormone). That's the magic number they watch throughout the cycle to see how your ovaries are doing. Then Dr. Scheiber did a baseline ultrasound. All was quiet with the exception of the remains of a follicle from last cycle. He said I was good to start the short protocol and so my first injection of Menopur (FSH + LH) will be tomorrow (Sunday) night. I'll do injections Sun, Mon, Tues, and Wednesday and then return Thursday morning for another ultrasound.

The Emotional: I had mixed feelings when I realized Dr. Scheiber would be seeing me today, as he is not my primary doctor. Both doctors are excellent, but there's something about your primary... you feel like he is the expert on your body. It's pretty pathetic that I've been there so often, I recognize which doctor's car is in the reserved parking spot up front. I have to say though, the man was so nice to me today. He must have taken a moment to look at my chart before he saw me. He was so kind and encouraging, and I so appreciate that.

Jason and I spent a lot of time talking and praying about this last night. It's been really hard to figure out who to even ask to pray for us. It's like we are afraid to ask... it's hard to put yourself out there again in front of the world when it may all fall apart... again. It's so hard to show how hurt I am... I'll always tell you I'm about 10 times better than I am.

FEAR... that is the key word that pops up again and again and again. It's interesting how people respond to fear. Some are like horses... they run forward, backward, sideways, whatever... just keep forward motion and the bad stuff can't get you. Others are like deer; they freeze... utterly paralyzed. If what's after me can't detect me, I'll be safe. Both are the protective mechanisms God gave them. One isn't better than the other, but they are very different and can make for some long conversations about how to move forward. We know fear isn't of the Lord. I know Scripture says, "Do not fear." Well, I am not going to pretend I've mastered not feeling fear. I am just going to keep laying it at Jesus' feet.

But now thus says the Lord,
he who created you, O Jacob,
he who formed you, O Israel:
“Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by name, you are mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;
when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,
and the flame shall not consume you.
Isaiah 43:1-2

Fear not, for I am with you;
be not dismayed, for I am your God;
I will strengthen you, I will help you,
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

For I, the Lord your God,
hold your right hand;
it is I who say to you, “Fear not,
I am the one who helps you.”

Isaiah 41:10,13

God is our refuge and strength,
a very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way,
though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea,
Psalm 46:1-2

There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.

1 John 4:18

Friday, June 25, 2010

Day 1.

Here we are at the beginning of our 3rd IVF cycle!

The Technical: Drugs ordered and on standby. I called this morning and made an appointment for tomorrow. They will draw blood and do a baseline ultrasound scan. If the ovaries are quiet, I will begin the stimulation injections probably on Sunday. This is a new protocol for me. In the past, there has been a down-regulation of the ovaries first (they do this so that all the follicles are kind of starting growth from the same place). The hope is that by avoiding that step (in my case, since my ovaries tend to be pretty quiet at the beginning anyway), we may be able to retrieve more eggs. The change in protocol does make me a bit nervous, but I trust in the wisdom God has given my doctors. Anyway, we'll see what it looks like tomorrow - that will determine which protocol they use. I've also been concerned about going into this as I'm getting over a very nasty cold. The nurse assured me today that it's fine, so that does comfort me.

The Emotional: **Deep breath** Not sure... excited, scared, dizzy, so much to think about and no time to think. I don't feel scared about the process... I mean it's old news to us by this point. It's the unknown that scares me. The what if doesn't work this time and what if it works but we lose another baby? Why are we doing this???

...and then... I look at my angel Michael... and I know it's worth every agonizing moment of uncertainty. I've been listening to a lot of Jars of Clay lately. It's old-school, I know, but it's raw and emotional and so where I am right now. These lyrics from the song Much Afraid really resonate in my heart right now. So, here they are... they say it better than I can...

Empty again
Sunken down so far
So scared to fall
I might not get up again

So I lay at your feet
All my brokenness
I carry all of my burdens to you

All of these things
I've held up in vain
No reason nor rhyme
Just the scars that remain
Of all of these things
I'm so much afraid
Scared out of my mind
By the demons I've made
Sweet Jesus, you never ever let me go
Oh, sweet Jesus, never ever let me go

So happy to love
Yet so far to go
You lead me on to where I've never been before