feeling fragile

So, I took my last BCP on Tuesday night.  When I went on them, my husband expressed some reservations.  But I seemed to be fine while taking them.  Stopping them, not so much. The intention was to trigger my period early, so we could get an early December retrieval.  

So, on Thursday night I made brownies.  A big batch, so some in the square Pyrex I always use and a bit more in a new little rectangular tin.  The rectangular tin was fine, but I was in a hurry with the Pyrex, touched my little finger to something hot and dropped it on the floor.  The shiny white tiled floor (I seriously don’t like tiled floors for much, but renters don’t get a choice). Baked brownie and glass everywhere.  Very very sad. So my work got brownies, his work got a sultana cake.

And today. I was upset by my gym teacher, I was upset by a comment G made and walked into a sliding glass door, I got upset when we went shopping.  Not really a happy person.  I think the only reason I have been ok at work is because the office has been a bit empty this week and the person who sits next to me (who is very capable of saying the wrong thing) has been out of the office from Wednesday. 

But I finally got my period, which means that the later of the two days we were aiming for egg retrieval should be ok. 

progress

Progress in a number of areas.

 

We bought a set of scales a couple of weeks ago.  I “lost” 2 kg in the fours days after, as I was sick and so had no appetite and drank little water.  Then I returned to normal, and put 1.5 kg back.  In the last week or so I have lost another half a kg.  this is good. I was hoping to have lost 5 kg by egg retrieval in December, but that is unlikely.

Over the weekend I finished the embroidery part of my owl! Yay.  Now I just have to sew on the backing and stuff it!

In the beginning

and now!

Finished!

It’s been quite challenging, I have practiced some new stitches, and some not so favourite stitches.

 

And today I picked up the meds for the egg retrieval cycle.  The plan is to get eggs, make embryos, biopsy and PGD them and freeze away. Complicated by the Christmas holidays, of course.  So today I spoke to the nurse, the drop dead must extract by date is dec 10. She isn’t too happy about having that as the target, so we will aim for dec 5.  Which means I will get to stop taking the pill very soon. This is why I won’t be losing 5 kg by egg retrieval.

 

 

complications

Because it’s not enough that something or other has prevented me from doing an IVF cycle the last two times, the plan for a late November through December cycle is also an issue.  The last day we can do an egg retrieval with a five day biopsy is December 10. Which is ok, except that my cycle has been a tad unpredictable.  If, and it’s a pretty big if, it starts tomorrow (as glow says it should) and its a thirty day cycle, we would be home safe by a few days.  But my cycle has been tending towards 32 day, and that just stuffs it up.  So the proposal is to put me on a high estrogen  pill. Apparently Apple autocorrect reads estrogen as stroganoff.  High stroganoff pill!  

I did point out that I am one of those unfortunate people who was never able to manipulate my cycle with the pill. Hence the high estrogen.  The nurses will consult the doctor and get back to me Monday.

It’s starting to feel like this fourth ivf cycle will never happen.

In other news, the donor process with my sister is moving along.  We had our mandatory counselling, they will have theirs next week.

It is making me articulate my end point. This fourth cycle will be my last one (not counting any FETs).  If we don’t have viable embryos from this and my sister’s cycle, that is the end.  No multiple donor cycles.  No further attempts (apart from efforts at natural conception).

We are heading to Japan December 19.  If I have an ivf cycle in December, we will get the news on embryos in the week before.  At least I will have a holiday to recharge if the news is bad.  Expect much raw fish eating if it is.

 

IVF drugs: A field guide- Gonal F

So, this cycle seems to be all of the drugs I have had before rolled up together.  yay. not.

So I started with the Gonal F injections first.  This is the FSH part (please note this is not a scientific explanation of how the drugs work).

It comes in a box

Which opens from the top.  The first round, I did not realise this and was opening it from the end and sliding the plastic thing out.  I thought it was quite user unfriendly.

So, the medication is contained within the pen thing, and there are lots of needles that can be screwed on to the top.  This is because you select your dosage amount- each pen thing contains 900 units of the stuff, and dosage can be as low as 12.5.  So one pen may be used multiple times, with different needles each time. The first time my dosage was both low, and did not divide evenly into the 900, which meant I had leftover drugs.  My husband suggested that I use up the dregs by combining amounts from two pens, but two shots where one would do? NO thanks.

Needle size: pretty small.  this is a good thing

The needles are simply screwed on and off, with the plastic cap to prevent accidents.

The cap at the other end is turned to dial up to the right amount of medication

As you can see, I am now on a pretty high dosage.

Bad things: It has to be kept in the fridge.  This makes it fun in the pick up phase and tends to take up fridge space.  It also means it feels cold going in on the shot.

Best tip I got was to do it slowly.  And the reason why? The cold STINGS and HURTS if you do it fast, and then you get a lovely welt the next day.  Slow is the charm.  It also means that you can check that all of it has gone in (the counter goes down, so if it doesn’t read zero, there is still some left to put in!).

Good Things: Tiny needles.  The waste doesn’t take up much space in the sharps bin (only the needles).  While it needs to be done at around the same time, it isn’t as vitally important as one of the other meds.

Momentum

I picked up the IVF drugs today.  We will be doing a cycle in July, so the drugs had to be gotten.   Much less enthusiasm this time, maybe because I remember the aftermath of last time.  Or because I have been reading womb for improvement and remembering two years ago.  Whatever the reason, no enthusiasm here.  The drugs are a necessary component to a desired end.  This time one of the needle regimes has been replaced by nasal spray.  Not quite sure why,perhaps because I complained about to many needles? Problem is, I really don’t handle nasal spray well either.

Fingers very tightly crossed in the hope that we get a pre IVF baby.

Los back on the IVF bike, just getting going.

Oin other areas, myprogress in the eat healthy arena has stalled.  Chilly days don’t help.  Oddly, I have had some sizing isues in the last few days.  shirts thatunused to fit over the head now don’t.  No idea why ( yes, checked to make sure extra buttons not there). Then I tried on some bras at Target.  Got the size I usually get and they were dramatically too small.  Not in the cups, but the band.  Not happy.  So ribs and head have grown. Weird

the drugs

I picked up the ivf drugs today.  I am on a fairly low key level to start with, having had a decent response to the previous regime.

Scary though, will have to give myself a shot every day (and sometimes two) for the better part of two weeks.  Although thankfully, I seem to have been given the small needles.  and something that resembles an EpiPen.  However, judging by the fact that they made me to two test runs at the doctors, something people screw up on a regular basis.

And I paid over most of the contents of our savings account.  We will, eventually, get about a little less than half back.  That’s the charm of the australian medical structure, Medicare sets an “acceptable” cost (less than half the current cost) and will pay a whopping 75% of that.  My private health will then cover the 25% above that.  Still leaving me poor and cranky.  Not as scary as the American system, but still really frustrating. A co-worker recently asked me if I was still looking to buy a house. ha. No, I replied, we have decided to spend the house deposit (such that it is) on children. Oh yeah, they can be expensive.  I didn’t feel like enlightening her to the extent to which they are expensive pre-conception.

Of course, once we have spent a certain amount in the calendar year, 80 % of whatever we pay for most medical things will be reimbursed.  One of the exceptions to this 80%? Fertility treatment.  A few years ago the government realised that it was paying a lot for fertility treatment and took steps to correct the issue.  I live in hope that whatever bureaucratic public servant (same thing, I know) who came up with the idea suddenly needs the service, and we will find the ceiling miraculously raised.    Don’t laugh, I noticed last year that when the public service noticed that a particularly nasty piece of legislation was badly written and thus would cause a tax problem for most of the public service, a special exemption and clarification suddenly got written.  Provided some amusement for me.

Anyway, a part of the fridge is now a mini pharmacy, and a sharps container sits under the hall table. Now we just have to wait for my period to start.

Thoughts

Movie theatres don’t want my business. That is the only conclusion I can draw. We have 10 prepaid tickets to the biggest chain in brisbane( event cinemas) and over the weekend we could not find a single movie we wanted to watch. The two I am interested in are apparently only watched by kids, and show only at 10 am and noon. No thanks. Others are are only watchable in 3d, and even that only once a day. What is showing is oscar bait ( aka thinky, depressing movies) and teenage boy fare. Where is the entertainment? At least hunger games is out in march.

I had a health check up at work today (one of our benefits), a two year follow up. Since the last one I have gained 6 kilos, and my bad cholesterol has gone up, but my blood pressure is down, as is my glucose. Yay.

Tomorrow is our Ivf information appointment. Scary and not the most romantic valentines day event. Then we hand over the contents of the savings account. We do get a chunk back from Medicare, but not until we pick up the meds at the end of the month. So this month is a last ditch attempt to avoid the needlefest. Although, at least some look like an epi-pen.

Written on my iPad, please ignore the wrong words!