Friday, October 29, 2010

Well I talked to Andy tonight about how I'm feeling about the Lexapro. I told him I was very uncomfortable with the idea of being on it while pregnant. At first he said "Well you just have to make a decision you can live with" and I was like "Uh, no. This is a WE thing. This is OUR baby so.. you're in this". I know what he meant was just that he knows I know more about how I'm feeling and about the risks, and he thinks I'm qualified to make the decision. I told him that I want to try the medication for as long as I can and see how I feel, but that unless I ABSOLUTELY CANNOT SURVIVE I want to come off of it when we start bcps. I will definitely stop taking it by week 20, because the risk of persistent pulmonary hypertension increases 6 times when the mother takes an SSRI during the last 20 weeks. I told my husband we might have to go back to dealing with high-anxiety me for 9 months, and he said "then we deal with it". And we'll know we have a medication to go back to as soon as we have the baby.

I feel good about this. I think the high risk OB will too. I'm not sure how the psychiatrist will but I'll discuss it with her in two weeks. I've definitely seen people taking it for short periods, so we'll see. But this is a decision that makes me feel good, so I'm going with it as long as it's ok to be on it for a short time. Who knows, it still may not work, but for now I'm feeling a little more hopeful. And I feel like I'm making the right choice for my baby. And... another point for IVF... total cycle control. I can be on the meds because I will know exactly when we're going forward. We'll still have to talk about that 1 cycle thing, but we can talk about that after we get my test results.

I had my appointment with the Psychiatrist today. I'm actually very relieved. I was nervous because you never know how you'll feel with a psychiatrist but I felt extremely comfortable with her. We really only had 2 options for medications for me: Prozac and Lexapro. The side effects are supposed to be very similar. Although prozac has been studied better in pregnancy, and I took it previously and it worked well, I chose the Lexapro. She was very clear that there are some risks, but she said that in my case, it was very clear that the benefits far outweigh the risks. She said that if it was her, she would take it. She said she's very honest about things like that, and if she were me she would do it. Says a lot about my mental state, right!? 

Anyway, I'm very unhappy about being on anything. I talked with my husband and he thinks this is the right thing to do, but it's just not sitting well with me. The high risk OB did call me back but I couldn't get to the phone, so I haven't talked to her yet. I definitely want to hear her take on which drug is better, and if she says Prozac is better, I'll call the psychiatrist and switch it. There's a reason I'm kind of happy about the Lexapro though. Apparently it has a much shorter half-life and works much faster. People often see some benefit within 1-2 weeks and full benefit at 4 weeks... the other side of that coin is that it gets out of your system very quickly. So here's the thing. I don't know if this medication will even work for me, and I also have no idea when the IVF is going to be. So one option we do have is to try it, see if it works, and if I don't like it I can come off of it, or I can stop it when we start the IVF cycle since it'll be out of my system right away. At minimum, I could get a few months of relief, find a drug that works that I could start on as soon as the baby was born, and work on behavioral therapy in the mean time. Also, from my own research, the main concern is lung issues when the drug is taken after 20 weeks, so there is the possibility of taking it until then and weaning off. So there are some things to think and talk about. I don't feel comfortable taking the drug my whole pregnancy, but I don't feel comfortable having this kind of anxiety right now when I'm NOT going through the IVF, and if I can be comfortable, even for a few months, I want to. For right now, I'm just excited at the prospect of actually being normal again in a few weeks. Even if it's short-lived, I'll know there's a drug that works for me... that I can go back to after we have our beautiful baby.

All of that said (and still clearly undecided about what to do when IVF time comes), I still don't have my period. I thought I did. I got bloody CM (I know you wanted to know that). But then nothing. Very weird. I guess it'll be here tomorrow... which still gives me a really short LP, but hey, what else has been normal about this cycle? We'll see what happens. And I have my RE appointment in a week and a half, and I'll be finding out the results of my 24 hour urine next week, so I'll at least have some idea of how the prednisone is working and when we might look at IVF. Progress is being made.. now I just have some decisions to face. I know I absolutely do not want to take an SSRI the last 20 weeks of my pregnancy. I guess we'll see about beforehand. I'll talk to the OB and see what she thinks before finalizing anything. This whole thing sucks, but if nothing else, a few months of SSRI & behavioral therapy before IVF is better than nothing!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

I just want to say that I have so much respect for those of you who don't normally ovulate in a regular fashion. I am currently on day 40 (the longest of my cycles since I started charting in 2008!) and I got bad cramps today so I think my period is coming over the next few days. I feel like it has been years rather than just over a month. I simply can't imagine having the stess of "Will I ovulate?" and "Will I ever get my period?" on top of "Am I ever going to get pregnant?". It's a horrible feeling having no idea what's going on in there... and I know some people who get 60+ day cycles, or need meds to start a period. You are all very strong women for enduring this sort of anxiety on a regular basis.

On another note, I've lost 6.2 pounds in the last two weeks according to our Biggest Loser at work challenge. That's 2.17% of my body weight, and I'm psyched. I have exactly 8.8 pounds to lost to my IVF weight, and I did weigh with clothes (and shoes!) on this morning. It still weighs 3.8 pounds heavier than home, but my clothes and shoes probably weigh close to that.

I called the high risk OB about medications for my OCD. I think she'll be the most knowledgeable and with information from her I can formulate a plan. I have to do something. I had a panic attack this morning with shortness of breath and everything. That's bad for baby too, so I guess we'll see what she says. The good thing about monitoring my cycles (I'm continuing to do so right now) is that I know exactly what's going on when, so there will be no "Oops! I'm pregnant, but still on this medication!" things happening. Andy wants to try one more natural cycle before the IVF, so I'm trying to figure that out. I can't make any decisions until after I talk to the OB, but we'll formulate a plan then. He came up to me and said "Can we have one more 'honey we need to do it RIGHT NOW' month before the IVF?". I'd like to accomodate if we can, 'cause I'd like to have one more natural cycle out of the way too. Just for peace of mind. I've been doing more research and I really don't want to take an SSRI, so I'm thinking about the whole Xanax as needed plan. It's category D, but because I know where I am in my cycle all the time, I can know when not to take it. At the same time, the SSRI would provide more long term benefit, and allow me to be less anxious, which is better for baby's cognitive and emotional development. I think if I wasn't so severely impacted (I almost couldn't work because of this morning's panic attack) I wouldn't even be considering it. I HATE MAKING THESE CHOICES. Chances are my baby would be fine.. but what if my baby is the 1 in 100 that has a problem from it or something? Then I have to live with that.

I just don't know what to do.. so instead of worrying I'm going to try to relax. I think tonight that might mean alcohol. Ahh, the (few/one) joys of NOT being pregnant.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Fear and Loathing in Eldersburg

I went to the nephrologist this morning. It was just a sort of "How are the meds working" visit, and it was OK. He mentioned the IVF a few times and said if he gets good numbers next week he's going to tell the high risk OB he thinks we should go for it. He's honestly concerned about me and my future in all aspects and that's a really cool thing for a doctor. He wants me to stay on the prednisone as well, which I was sort of nervous about because of all the side effects. My family seems to think the chest issues (palpitations, feeling my heart beating a lot) are from anxiety, and this wouldn't surprise me at all. He also mentioned that prednisone ups anxiety. I have an appointment on Friday to see about getting on medication. I've been researching the various drugs a lot, and I know what I absolutely will not take. I'm hesitant to take anything, but at the same time, I'm thinking "If I'm having panic attacks and irregular heartbeat and chest pain due to anxiety... what would that do to my baby?". My OCD has been classified as moderate to severe, and I don't know that it wouldn't be worse for my baby to deal with the constant anxiety. We're not talking some normal nervousness, but real panic... almost every day.

I keep thinking to myself how much better it would be if we could just take 6 months and use some medication and try to get my anxiety under control first, but... from talking to the Dr. today, it's just not an option. He actually wants me to get pregnant as early into my prednisone treatment as possible to ensure the prednisone is still helping my kidneys for as much of a pregnancy as possible. Like he's really unconvinced that it will help long term. And am I willing to completely give up my dreams of a baby because of an anxiety disorder? No, I'm not. It's taking so much else of my life away from me that I'm putting an end to it. If I have to use a low-mid dose of a medication, then I think that's what I have to do. If it was mdoerate anxiety I think I would avoid it, but as severe as it is, I honestly believe it would be worse for the baby to just leave it. So I hope everyone isn't thinking "wow, what a horrible mother you're going to be" because I'm not willing to risk not having a baby at all because of a maybe 1% increased risk of something. and the evidence is so conflicting. Does that make me a bad person? I dunno. But I don't think anyone should judge me until they've been faced with the decision themselves... because it's horrible. My life is one horrible decision after another and I'm not letting go of this one.. of trying to have a biological baby, until someone says "Erika, I'm sorry, you just can't". I've also tossed the thought around of seeing if they'll give me Xanax on super bad days, so that I can continue using behavior therapy, and just have the meds for if it gets REALLY bad.. so I don't have to miss work. It's short-acting, so I could just.. not use it.. when I'm pregnant but it would still help me get through the horrible days while allowing me to practice the cognitive behavioral therapy for a few months and hopefully start benefitting more from that before pregnancy.

In other news, I have lost weight. I was not even 10 pounds from the weight limit for IVF on the doctor's scale this morning. He said he could tell I've lost weight and that given that I'm on prednisone in such a high dose, he's amazed. He was clearly impressed. Me too. He actually said he was going to talk to Dr. Neale about the weight limit since I'm so close and under extraordinary circumstances. I had very little water retention which is also cool. I do, however, have to get an ultrasound of my kidneys on Friday. They're not expecting to find anything but he wants to see if there's anything visible causing the pain I've been in.

I guess I'm just stressed out today, but what else is new? I want the OCD to go away, and I want to chill out! I feel like I don't enjoy anything anymore because I'm falsely anxious (OCD anxiety is so weird. I'd rather have a real problem any day. I've never felt anxious about anything that was a real issue [OCD anxiety feels like dread. Literal dread though, not like "I'm dreading work tomorrow"]. Nervous, down, upset, sure.. but not anxious like this. I HATE OCD.), and when I'm not falsely anxious I'm worried about my kidneys, and when I'm not thinking about my kidneys I'm thinking about baby struggles. Well, next Sunday is my 24 hour urine so I should know next week if the prednisone is working. AHHHHHHHH!!!! I want my results right now!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Infertility At Work

Infertility is a touchy subject all the time, but especially at work. Today we had a baby shower where I found out a co-worker was pregnant with baby #2. She got pregnant exactly 1 year after #1 was born, so I'm pretty sure it was the first month trying. she was pregnant within 3 months of her wedding, so.. no problems there. Two other girls there were pregnant as well. Both on their first month trying. Two others who had just had babies.. 1 first month, 1 wasn't even trying. What a time that was. When I returned to my desk I started discussing one of the girls' upcoming showers with the 2 new moms. Neither one of them really knew I was trying but I kind of mentioned that we'd been having some issues. Just in a joking, "So which waterfountain have y'all been using?" kind of way. They were discussing their infants and both said "Oh, we can change the subject if it makes you uncomfortable!". *sigh* We all know how that one feels... I know they're trying to be nice but I feel like a bit of a freak. So I said "NO! I love it! Seriously. It’s not always easy but babies are amazing and everyone should be psyched to talk about their kids. Me having trouble doesn’t make it any less awesome that your babies are doing cool stuff. I just know a lot of people don’t talk about it but I think it’s cool because if you ever run into anyone else that has trouble they can see “Hey, there are options.” So I think I handled it pretty tactfully without sounding insincere. Now they're making jokes about how I need to have twin boys to fill the world up with more since everyone else is having girls.

I think it makes people uncomfortable, but I do like to be open about it. When I finally put baby stuff on Facebook, I plan to mention that our baby was conceived with fertility treatments (unless we have a miracle before then). I don't want to make people feel weird, but I know that there are other people out there struggling that don't have anyone to talk to and don't know about all of their options and things, so if someone needs to talk to someone, I want them to feel like they can talk to me. I think it's amazing how much people DON'T know about infertility. Things that are so normal to me, like talking about IVF and IUI and temping and OPKs, are so... unheard of to people who are fertile, or who aren't, but don't have any idea where to begin.

I'm not as convinced about ovulation anymore from my temp this morning, but I think I did. and if I didn't, I'd like my period please. I just want to be on to a new cycle. I got my IVF paperwork in the mail!!! Our initial deposit is going to be like 3600, plus it'll be around 1200 for cryopreservation and storage for a year. I'm incredibly thankful that my parents are paying for these things. I'm sure we'll have to pay them back for freezing but that's OK. I don't think we could come up with the deposit in time without them so I'm eternally grateful for this gift. We just have to get insurance approval and then be on our way. I'm so excited!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Well, I'm pretty sure I actually ovulated yesterday. Woo-hoo! It's only day 33! I did have a lot happen this month that could have delayed ovulation, though. Especially starting the new meds a few days before. But yesterday I had the tell-tale horrible pain in my right side and then I was crampy all night. I've been taking my temperature, though not really tracking, and it was finaly above 97.5, and I got up an hour earlier than usual, so it would've been at least in the 97.6s. It's just good to know that things are still working in there on some level. I started tracking in December 2008, and I've only had 2 cycles over 35 days, so that's pretty OK. I wonder about people with totally normal cycles lol. Nothing else to report.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

I don't know why I feel the need to post about this, but... I do, so I'm going to. Erinn just came over to my desk to chat. We were talking about the crib she got last night and stuff. Before she got up to leave, she told me to put my hand on her belly, so I did, and I could feel the baby moving!! It was so cool. I was kind of surprised because she's only 24 weeks but I couldn't definitely feel it! I yelled "Oh my God that's so cool!" really loud lol. I dunno... I like it when I have real, honest-to-God happiness about this stuff. Despite my troubles, pregnancy and birth is really amazing and just the realization that there's really a little baby girl in there moving around is so cool.

I feel good about things today. I mean I'm still terrified about my kidneys, but I'm doing the best I can, and I just have to be positive and hopeful and confident that it will work. It did before, and I definitely feel like the prednisone is doing more. I know I was on a short-term higher dose previously, but I feel constantly the effects of a triple oral dose. I'm hoping that my kidneys are feeling the constant effects as well. I'm pretty sure I will be getting a slip for a 24 hour urine for the first week of November. I'm VERY nervous and curious to see how it goes. My last 24 hour urine was up 2000mg to 8000 total, but it was a very blatant overcollection of 2 hours, so I am going to set my alarm to make sure it's a perfect 24 this time. I'll be happy with ANY improvement because last time it took about 3 months to see better numbers. Ideally, it will be down to 2000-2500 in January-February. That's my goal anyway. It was 1700 last January, but I was on Ace Inhibitors so that may have helped. I mean we'll see what happens. I'm nervous but just so hopeful that we're able to get this started and that it works. I think we'll do a fresh cycle and if it works, awesome, but if not we'll head right into another or a FET. I'm hoping we can get insurance straightened out over the next few months. I'm sure I'll need letters from doctors, but I'm hopeful. If not, Andy and I will take out a loan for half, but I'm really hoping it doesn't come to that. I just want to get started!!! Come on, kidneys... heal, guys!!

Monday, October 18, 2010

The Other Side of the Coin

Some days, when I look at my life right now, I get depressed and wonder "why me?". I've spent $300 on (non-pregnancy-related) medications in the last month, and I feel like I'm just way too young to be doing this. I had to use the insulin pen this weekend, and, as always, I'm battling the OCD anxiety. I'm in a lot of pain physically as well. I get a lot of pain in the abdominal area on the right side, and in my left chest/shoulder, and then there's the kidney stuff. And the prednisone makes my lungs burn so it hurts to breathe. I'm not sure what all of these pains are, and I don't want to go to the doctor because I feel like they'll think I'm silly and I worry too much. Which may be true, but I'm just so careful after my kidney mis-diagnosis (I won't even get into how mad it makes me to think I wouldn't be in this pregnancy situation, or any of this pain, if my doctor had just paid attention to me and caught this disease sooner than 4 years after it started... and before I diagnosed myself). Today all of these things are rattling around in my brain, taking up so much room in my head that I can't concentrate. What I'm really trying to do is learn from all of these things. It's hard to see the positives but I'm trying so hard to look at what I'm going through and take something from it. Today's lesson is brown rice.

Before I started the medicine, my endocrinologist told me I was on the way to being diabetic... insulin resistant if you will. I knew she was right, but my blood sugar seemed normal pretty much, so I... I won't say I ignored her, but I just didn't give as much thought to it as I should have. When I took my blood sugar this weekend and it was over 350, it was a wake up call to me. I had to break out the insulin pen and give myself that shot. I had to call in for more test strips and supplies, and the price is just stacking up. And I realized I don't want to live like that. But that's where I'm headed if I don't take my health seriously. Aside from medicine-induced crap, I have the kidney disease and high cholesterol. Both of which are extremely diet-dependent, and my doctor thinks losing weight will improve my kidneys as well. And I've known this but never really taken things seriously. Right now my quality of life is not very good, and when I sit here and think of the fact that all of these problems will just get worse as I get older unless I make some serious changes, I realize I have to start now. For me, but also for this baby. I don't want to be pregnant and need insulin if I can help by making better choices. I don't want to feed my baby the processed.. everything.. that I eat. I don't want my baby to feel tired like I do because I'm lugging around all this extra weight. And with the time crunch I may not be able to make all of the changes I want to before IVF, but if we've got 3 months, that's 3 months of positive changes I can make to make me and my as-yet-unconceived child feel better.

So I started with an experiment. I've been following sparkpeople for some time, trying to reign in my calories and saturated fat intake. I've made half-hearted attempts to eat more fruits and vegetables, but if I look over my food logs, I've been doing a terrible job. I'll have 4 "pretty good" days and then a week where I eat pizza twice, have mozzarella sticks, and a bunch of soda and snacks. I know I can't change everything overnight, but I want to eat better foods, and last night as I was craving some fried rice, I decided to try something. I could have ordered takeout fried rice, with whatever oils and things they put in it, but I didn't. I went to the store and bought a mix, and made it at home. So what changes did I make?

Well, for starters, I cut and cooked my own all white meat chicken breast. I used smart balance oil with lots of Omega 3s and very little saturated fat. I put almost an entire bag of mixed vegetables (with big chunks of carrots and green beans) in, and I used egg beaters instead of eggs. Finally, I used brown rice. I've always had a problem with brown rice and I don't know where it came from, but with my blood sugar all over the place, and my general unhealthy state, I couldn't justify white rice. So I tried it. I put all of these things together and... it was AWESOME.

I'm glad that I did this because it showed me that I can make things healthy and tasty. And keeping this vigilant eye on my blood sugar has been eye-opening for me too. And while I'm not psyched about how terrible I feel, I know that I can take some things away from this experience that will help me to be a healthier person, and, consequently, a more able mother. I don't want my child to be slowed down by my sluggishness and weakness. And I want to be a good role model. Sometimes I like to take little guesses at why these things turn out the way they do, and as much as it sucks, I still hope and think that maybe God has a plan for  me after all. Maybe I can't see it, and maybe I won't like it, but maybe I need the things in my life now, as much as I may hate them, for something he has planned later on. Maybe not! I don't know... but I like to think that's the case. I don't believe that everything happens for a reason. At least not a good reason. Sometimes our strength is tested for the sake of the test. And sometimes our experiences on the whole make us better able to handle life and... everything. But I do think I will get through this and be a better person for it. I hope so.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Well.. being a diabetic is not fun. I knew that while I was getting prednisone IVs it screwed up my blood sugar but part of me just didn't think it would in pill form. At first my sugars seemed ok, and I wasn't really testing much, but today I realized I need to. On a whim, I tested after eating 2 waffles with some syrup and it was 158. I'm supposed to take insulin if it's over 150 but I thought "It's super close and my timing is off.. I ate an hour and a half ago and I'm supposed to test before I eat" so I didn't take it. But, knowing it was high, I tested later in the afternoon and it was 358!!!! HOLY. Shit. So I had to suck it up and try the insulin. I had to take the max dose, and I was scared. I don't mind needles, but I didn't want to give one to myself. My friend was over and I asked her to sit with me while I did it. She's actually for real diabetic but isn't on insulin yet. I have a little pen, so I just pinched the skin by my belly button and placed the needle against the skin. Then I braced myself and shoved it in. And I didn't even feel it! I mean I really didn't feel it. I'm kind of happy just because I knew if I wanted to do IVF I would have to give myself needles and I was scared, but this pen is similar to a lot of the IVF needles and it wasn't an issue at all, so I'm glad I know that and it gives me one less thing to worry about as I go into it. It's still not exciting though and it's expensive. My pen is $60 bucks and may not even last a month. The strips are another 30, plus lancets... it's out of control. And I have good insurance! It's definitely teaching me that I need to lose weight though because I don't want to become actually diabetic. I'm very glad this is temporary and medication-induced. It's just not fun. I am feeling very sickly with all the medications I'm currently on. BUT I haven't seen any water retention in my ankles in two weeks and I'm hoping that's because the prednisone is doing its job. So... now I really need to lose that 15 pounds to make the IVF weight limit. I feel like such an ass. I was way under it when I started the meds last time but I was so down and just assumed it would make me gain weight that I let it make me gain.. 30 pounds! I'm an idiot. But.. not wanting to deal with insulin is making me make better food choices so hopefully in 2 or 3 months I'll have lost the weight, have my testing done, have better kidneys, and start IVF!!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

A Void...

Well I'm definitely depressed today. I called the RE last night to make sure they had talked to the OB about the kidney plan. They had talked, and are pretty much at "We'll pick back up when your kidneys improve". The problem is, my nephrologist wants to do the IVF RIGHT AWAY once my kidneys have improved, so I want to be ready. But it's like the RE doesn't even want to talk to me. I just want to get any testing and insurance issues out of the way so we can be ready as soon as we hear a number the OB likes on my protein. I don't know if I should push to talk to them or just wait? I know she doesn't want to move forward yet... I just want to have all my ducks in a row because we might not have much time once my kidneys align to get this process done. And what if we never get there? Ugh it sucks. I'm having trouble looking at my pregnant coworker. I HATE that the RE won't help unless the OB tells her to. We are infertile... the likelihood of us getting pregnant without her is slim... and especially in a healthy timeframe for me. If she says no I'm SCREWED and I hate that my life is dependent on other people's opinions. I should be allowed to decide for myself what to do.

I hate that it's hard to be around pregnant women and I dread pregnancy announcements. Why did we have to have kidney problems on top of infertility? If it was infertility without kidneys I could at least just look forward to IVF and not have this stupid window of time and have to wait for a doctor to decide I'm ALLOWED to have a baby. If it was just the kidneys I could just get pregnant on my own and take good care of myself. I'd be high risk but at least I'd have a shot. Why both? I know it doesn't help to ask why and I'll never get an answer but I just want to be a mom. I want a biological child.. I want the chance to feel my baby moving around inside me and it's not fair that I might not get that. I know.. it's not fair to everyone who might not, but I'm feeling it a lot right now. I don't mind.. I'd give anything to just go to IVF... it used to be a big fear and now I WELCOME it with open arms.. I just want the chance to try to have a baby. I want my kidneys to cooperate long enough for it... please, God let my kidneys improve so I can do IVF a few times and hopefully have a biological baby. I've given up so much of my life and my self and my mood to just survive the last few years. Please.. I deserve this so much... I deserve to have a baby of my own.

EDIT: I spoke to the nurse at my RE's office again. Apparently they were not aware of our plan to jump to IVF. The nurse consulted with the actual RE who said she she knows that I know we still have to wait for my kidneys to level out and completely understands my sense of urgency in getting all of my testing and insurance concerns put to rest ASAP. She is fully aware of the short timeframe and apparently had thought we were still planning IUI so that's why they didn't understand what I wanted to talk about since I didn't need to do anything further for IUI. I have a real IVF consult on 11/09. YAY! I'm going to start filing with my insurance then and see if we can get approved. I'm so glad she understands and wants to meet with us about our next steps! At least I can have a plan and take some time to convince my insurance if I need to. We have the money for it already. Now I just have to wait on my kidneys! I'm making progress!!!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

I didn't mention this in the last blog because I forgot about it, but I need to comaplain (surprise!) and I don't know where else to do it so I'm putting it here.

My kidney.. is an a-hole sometimes. Saturday was a very weird day and I'm not sure what to expect out of what happened. Basically, I get this dull ache in my back sometimes. Sometimes it is intense but usually it's just annoying. I also get sharp pains at times. My doctor always asks me if I have any pain and I tell him I do, but he doesn't say much about it. Well.. Saturday was one for the books. I'd been having the dull ache and a few of the sharp pains, but all of a sudden it got intense. On the right side of my spine in sort of the middle/lower part of my back I was getting HORRIBLE pains. It felt like someone was reaching through my back to try to yank out my kidney. That's how bad it was. It would get this sort of... I don't want to say pressure but it would feel weird for a second and then sort of.. throb out in a pulse of just.. absolute terror. I was actually screaming and crying. This went on for about ten minutes until I drank a ton of water and it went away. It was much worse than the sharp pains I'm used to. My dad says it sounds like a kidney stone, but it didn't last long and ended very abruptly, so I don't know. I'm going to mention it to the doctor when I see him again on the 25th, but I'm REALLY not happy about it. I don't need any more kidney damage, but I'd like to know if it's related to the IGA or if it's a random occurrence. There doesn't seem to be a correlation, but you never know. I'm not letting it go with a "Oh that sucks" this time though. I want to know what's going on because I don't want to go through that again! I really REALLY hope it was nothing. I don't need any more detours on my baby journey!
I'm still not excited about my wonky cycle. Not one bit. I hope my period comes in a reasonable time and I can forget it and hope next cycle is normal. That's what happened in February. If not I'll have to see if I can get my hormones checked. I'm trying not to think too much about it though, and instead added some things to my Amazon baby wish list. I know it's silly since I don't have a baby yet, but sometimes I find cool stuff I'd really like to have and I want to remember it so I put it down. Am I the only one who does this? Plus I like to think about the whole process in a more positive light sometimes, so thinking about the good stuff - planning like I'm GOING to have a baby helps me to feel more positive that it will happen for me. I've just found some bedding and some books I really like, and I want to do some research. Whatever the means, I do intend to be a mom in the next year or two so it's good to be prepared and ready and know what I like. I'm hoping to have 9 hormonal months to decide, but it's still fun to think about babies and not be upset and sad, but rather hopeful and optimistic, so I like to look now.

I saw a blog a close friend wrote today - I have no idea if she reads this or not - and it made me think about her situation and so I have a question to pose to anyone out there who may have been through anything similar. I hope she doesn't mind me posting this (no one reads this from our real life)! Basically, she just had her 4th BFN cycle, which we both know is not a long time, but there are some extenuating circumstances. Last July they discovered she had endo when they found a 14x15 CM I think endometrioma which they removed. During the process they saw her tube (s?) were inflamed, which they said could be because of endometrial tissue in the tubes. She asked her doctor for an HSG since she knew there was a substantial chance there were tubal issues, but he told her to wait until Feb. I'm wondering if this is standard. I know that most places like you to wait a year, but when you have a known condition, especially one where they've seen a tubal problem, why would they make you wait to get an HSG? I just feel like this whole process is so frustrating.. even when you don't have any reason to think there's a problem. Why make someone wait if they know there is an issue? I just wanted to get another take on it. Thoughts anyone??

She's taking the HSG way more like a man than I have too lol. I'm still really upset about mine and have decided to ask for a valium or something after the OB told me I should. Especially since I cant take ibuprofen and tylenol doesn't have the same pain fighting properties. I'll be setting up the IVF consult once November rolls around and I'm sure she'll have me get it soon after. Well.. I hope so anyway. She might not do ANYTHING without OB approval, but I don't see why she wouldn't want to just get it out of the way. I want to now. Seriously.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Well.. I did get an anniversary surprise of EWCM (you're so glad I told you, right?). I'm not sure what this means, but it would be neat if it meant impending O. Just peace of mind I suppose. And now I'm going to reveal a secret. Well.. it WAS our anniversary... and now I'm kind of hoping we somehow conceived. Given all the problems we've been having with MFI and my TSH and the fact that my cycle was all screwed up, we've kind of assumed that it's not going to happen naturally, so we're not worrying too much about it. But at the same time, we know it's possible, and there's a daydreamy little piece of me that can't help but think about how cool it would be. It's not going to happen though. But just so I don't sound like a totally horrible person, the prednisone I'm on is a category B-C medicine... they were going to have me conceive while still on it. And my kidney problem does pose some potential risks, but I was going to be high risk either way. So while it's probably not the most responsible, we're not being complete idiots.

I dunno.. the whole thing seems so silly, but I keep thinking about all those stories of people who were about to go through IVF and conceived naturally or the girls from "I didn't know I was pregnant" who ovulate once every 6 months and still caught the egg. And I wonder if it could happen to me. Well... I'm still planning on losing weight and starting IVF in January/February. I really hope it works. I keep thinking about and wondering about how it's going to go. If I'm going to get through the HSG and not need more tests. If I'm going to be able to lose the weight (2 last week.. 15 to go). If I'm going to stim ok, if they'll get any eggs, if we'll have any freeze, If I'll over-stim and have to cancel. There are so many "what ifs" And it's driving me nuts. I want answers now and I can't have them.

I need to chill out. Does anyone have an valium lol.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Where is O? :( I am on CD20 with no signs of O. No temp change... nothing. I had a lot of pains up to CD16, but nothing since. I'm nervous about this. Since I started synthroid I've had a lot of weird spotting. Like my period would end and then 2 days later I'd spot. I had a spot of blood mid-cycle, too. I've still Od and had a normal cycle otherwise, but not this month. No EWCM either. I wonder if I'm going to O at all? I know even people with normal cycles have anovulatory cycles once in a while. I had a 40 day cycle in February. I'm so scared that now that I'm on the meds and getting closer to IVF someting will go wrong. I know that IVF can correct a lot of problems, but I'm still scared it's something IVF can't correct, or that something else will happen between now and then. I really hope my kidneys cooperate and we get to IVF and everything else does, too. My hormones were all great in July except my TSH which is now down to 1.6. I'm trying not to be pessimistic I just really want this to go well and I'm so scared of something happening. I know I shouldn't worry yet. I might just O really late this month. I've been dealing with the OCD and tons of anxiety so maybe it threw me off. I've been so excited about the possibility of being pregnant in March.. I just want to make it to transfer and have things go well... I don't want it to get cancelled or never started. I'm trying not to worry but it's in my nature. I hope everything is ok!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Wow. Prednisone. It's a funny, funny animal. I'm not sure if I'm just weird, or if I need to give it more time, but... I feel GOOD. I took my first dose Monday night at around 11pm. Tuesday morning sucked. I couldn't sleep and I got restless legs and pain in my hips. Later on in the day I started to feel better, though, and I decided to switch my dosing to mornings, so I took my second dose a few hours ago. And I feel awesome. I feel... confident, able, positive, and energetic. These are things which do not describe me. Prednisone has an energy-causing... mania sort of effect on some people. I think I am experiencing some form of this but it's  very mild.. I almost feel like I'm on the perfect anti-anxiety medicine. I have energy again, I'm not full of anxiety, I'm able to stop my mind from focusing on obsessions from my OCD (I dont know that this effect will last but it's ok for today!) But it's not TOO much. It's just enough that I feel... almost normal again, without being over the top crazy. I was able to sleep last night as well. If I could feel like this the next 6 months I'd be a happy girl! I know that as I am on it for longer the side effects will probably change and maybe get worse, but I'm enjoying what it's doing right now lol. Yesterday I had a LITTLE bit of an overzealous appetite but I didn't let it get to me too much. Today I feel fine. I actually feel like I have MORE control because I'm not depressed and anxious. I've been drinking a lot of water and decaf tea to help stave off the water retention.

One of the side effects of prednisone is high blood sugar. So far I've been doing OK but I really don't want to take insulin so I'm trying to pay attention to my carbs. I think this is probably a better way for me to live anyway so I'm hoping I can sort of learn from this experience what kinds of "good" carbs I enjoy and what bad carbs I'm willing to give up. I plan to eat that way while pregnant anyway. I have a calendar at my desk to keep track of my doses and I can't wait to be looking at it with months filled up with Xs. I'm FINALLY doing something on this journey. I'm still terrified I won't loe the weight in time but I just have to keep trying and do the best I can. I wonder what exactly about Prednisone causes weight gain. Some say water retention and some say the appetite. I don't remember a lot of water retention previously while on it and I think if I drink enough I will be ok. And I can control my appetite if I have to. I read some stories of people gaining 30 pounds in 2 weeks, or 60 in 3 months. AHHHH!!! I gained 5 in 2 months the last time I was on it and I was not paying attention to my nutrition. I ended up gaining 30 total, but that happned after my wedding and through the holidays and I wasn't on any sort of diet program so I don't think it was the prednisone's fault. I guess only time will tell, but I just keep picturing me holding our sweet baby and I know I have to do whatever I have to to get there.