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Thursday, August 27, 2009

A transfer story

My acupuncture appointment was set for 7:30, the doctor consult at 9:00 and the transfer at 9:45. I didn’t sleep all night, partially because I was so excited and partially because I could not stop thinking about work. So I set the alarm for 5:45am because we had some BD business to take care of, per doctor’s orders, of course. (and not just doctor Google, yes, I even asked my doctor and he confirmed!) During the BD, I was thinking, now I can say that we had sex on the day we got pregnant. No causal relationship, but whatever.

Ann, our embryologist called when I just got off the acupuncture table, and said that both blasts survived the thaw and are expanding. Woo Hoo.

The two embryos were both frozen on Day 5 last May. From the numbers last time, we transferred #1 and #6. They were 5BB and 5AB. The first one is a CF carrier, and the second one is completely unaffected and not a carrier. Since we did the chromosomal testing, we know that the first one is a girl and the second one is a boy. The two we have left to freeze are both boys.

Our transfer room had two fancy chocolates on the “bed.” Such a nice touch. One blue, one pink. (Well, the pink one was actually red, but whatever, I used my imagination to make it applicable.) So we are sitting there in the transfer room. Carlos is playing with the music, and I am drinking water, wrapped up in two blankets and waiting for the valium to take effect. Carlos brought the music again this time, his Mac with itunes, so he could just pick the songs he felt best. We listened to Christian praise music in the pre-transfer, check-my-bladder time.

So since we are just sitting there, waiting. I’m thinking 10 steps into the future. I asked Carlos if we get pregnant with a boy this time, what are we going to do next time? Theoretically we would like two children, a boy and a girl. And Carlos thinks it’s ideal to have the boy first, then the girl. Which is how it is in his family. And it totally works.

We probably should be way past thinking so ideally, but clearly we're still optimistic. Anyway, I wanted to know if he'd be interested in having two boys and then trying again for a girl, which of course, would mean a fresh cycle, I am making several major assumptions this time.

#1. that we get pregnant with one boy this time, have a healthy baby.
#2,that the two boys survive the thaw next time and we get pregnant with a singleton (the assumption that the next FET would be a boy is backed up by science.).

And there are actually a ton more smaller assumptions in there. I realized I was making LOTS of assumptions and decided to slow down my line of questioning. He said, let's just see what happens this time. And he's right. So, it’s a good thing the doctor walked in at that moment to get me ready for the transfer. My bladder was full, I was open and ready, and then the embryologist brought in our babies in a catheter.

Carlos played American Baby by Dave Matthews Band. It's the perfect transfer song. The refrain is

Stay beautiful baby.
I hope you stay American Baby.
American baby.

And that's exactly my prayer and wish. Please stay for the next nine months. I can’t wait to meet you then.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

twas the night before transfer...

and I am finally getting home from work past 11:00 pm.

i hate lying to my boss and co-workers. they know that i am going to a girls weekend with my college girlfriends this weekend. But of course, I'm off tomorrow, Thursday, and Friday. You, blogosphere know why. But they don't.

So, my boss says, are you flying tonight? when she sees me working late. We frequently take the redeye from the nearby big city. Instinctively, because I'm an honest person, I say, oh no, we're flying Friday. which probably leaves her wondering. Why are you taking off tomorrow and THursday, then? But she doesn't ask.

Because, really, i haven't taken vacation in a long time. My company is one of those awesome companies that gives me over 5 weeks of vacation a year. Not kidding. Yeah, you get it. But it's pretty hard to use it. i'm really hoping that next year I have a roughly 7-pound reason to use it. But i didn't use it all this year, and no one seems to think it's a big deal that i'm using it now. Actually i lose some vacation that I don't use by Agust 31. so this transfer actually comes at a good time, since it forces me to use it.

A few other random thoughts..

Sex before FET - I just learned from reading a blog and then googling that sex before FET is a good thing. Supposedly there are studies that says it helps with implantation. I hope Carlos is ready, because when I hear news like this, I take it seriously! I'm thinking we are waking up early tomorrow. Oh wait.. I mean VERY early tomorrow. I gotta be at acupuncture at 7:30.

New thought.. Medrol is nasty. Seriously, why can they not make it taste better? it's the nastiest thing ever. I gag every time i take it. I'm glad the transfer is here because it means one day closer to not taking that nasty pill anymore.

I am feeling really good about this cycle! I really feel like my high levels of estrogen caused by very early miscarriage last time. This cycle being natural (even though I am taking combo-suppositories) I'm hoping is the thing that makes my embies stick!

ohmigosh - i woke up early Satrday morning and read the LFCA.. I couldn't believe it when I saw the someone posted my news to the LFCA. what a huge JOY!! I have a pretty cool life, but I gotta tell you, that was one of the coolest expereinces ever! I do hope I get some support on transfer day and the waiting period, and I hope that my blog helps someone along the way!

ok, that's it. I'll report on the transfer tomorrow.

Welcome ICLW - Things I Love

I never have done this before, but I know most people write an introductory post about themselves for ICLW.

The short version is up at the top of my blog.. We're in our 2nd round of IVF, transfer scheduled for Wednesday in the middle of ICLW. It's a frozen transfer this time, and we are thankful for our tot-cicles. I call my husband Carlos on the blog. He and I are both 35-year-old carriers of Cystic Fibrosis, so we are donig PGD to avoid having a child affected with the disease. We are not affected at all, just carriers. We live in northern California and Central Texas. Yes, both.

To share a little more about myself, I guess I'm taking the "positive" route.. since I made a quick, top-of-mind list of things I love. In no paticular order, and definitley not-exhaustive, here's a list of a few things I love...

  1. Family bathrooms, especially in airports
  2. my blackberry
  3. sseatbelt purses
  4. little funny or inspirational gift books
  5. Pinkberry
  6. soy candles
  7. thank you points
  8. free money
  9. walking around Target, even if I don’t buy anything
  10. Desperate Housewives
  11. helping others with personal finance
  12. Dr. Google
  13. a good healthy debate
  14. Choux Cream from Tokyo
  15. street musicians and street magicians
  16. baby stuff
  17. good customer service
  18. walking around American art and craft stores
  19. the “afternoon tea” experience
  20. getting to know people
  21. searching and finding in my gmail
  22. fish and chips
  23. In-N-Out Burger
  24. my fujitsu scansnap
  25. getting upgraded before I get to the airport
  26. massages and facials
  27. excel
  28. singing praise music in church
  29. new moms that admit that sometimes they want to throw their baby at the wall
  30. my Briggs and Reilly luggage
  31. driving around looking at open houses, just for fun and ideas
  32. lifestories
  33. my goddaughter’s curls
  34. laying in the sun
  35. independent bookstores
  36. public transportation, especially underground
  37. my Butler Bag
  38. when people ask questions about what we are going through
  39. listening to Jackopierce
  40. the scent at Westin Hotels
  41. new comments on my blog
  42. glass art
  43. Christmas music
  44. Sobe lifewater, just out of the fridge
  45. my mac computer
  46. my digital camera
  47. Trader Joe’s
  48. My husband’s dimples
  49. Lululemon yoga pants
  50. IVF success stories
  51. Big fruit salads
  52. eating Mexican food on an outdoor patio
  53. Looking at my pedometer and seeing a number greater than 5K when I get home from work
  54. Planning a vacation or weekend getaway
  55. Conversations that challenge my worldview
  56. Working on my computer at a coffee shop
  57. Puppies
  58. Bad English that makes you smile
  59. The Drive-in movie
  60. Quicken
  61. A great conversation with an old girlfriend
  62. USAA
  63. Talking with my 86-year old grandma about pop culture
  64. Prescription transfer coupons
  65. CNN
  66. Win-win situations
  67. Bikram Yoga
  68. Football games at Kyle Field
  69. Funny laugh-out-loud blogs
  70. Scallops
  71. The Admirals Club
  72. Reading the newspaper on Sunday mornings
  73. Eating samples at Costco, and then not needing lunch
  74. The song Praise You in the Storm
  75. My friends, both blogosphere and real life
Do you Love any of these? What's on your list.. Tell me in the comments, making sure to let me know if you make your own list on your blog.

Friday, August 21, 2009

does being positive matter?

Don’t worry, I’m not going to get all The Secret on you. But, lately I’ve been thinking about this a lot. .. the whole “power of positive thinking” thing. I usually see the good in things, I believe things happen for a reason, and I see the world in a positive light.

You know... meditation, reduction of stress level, honoring your body and making a good home in your heart for the embryos… I mean, specifically post-transfer and before beta results.. does anything you do, uh, emotionally, mentally, make any difference at all in getting pregnant?

So, like during my two week wait (which is so not two weeks, it’s like 6 days in my case. I mean, I am so peeing on a stick in 6 days.) Will it help if during bed rest, I do some meditation and specifically think on the embryos placed inside of me, and like honor them and love them and sit still and like smile on them. Does that help? What if I say Namaste to every one I see?

Because I didn’t do that last time. I mean, do I need to do the breathing exercises like that woman with the way-too-soothing voice Anji. If I do, will that help? If I don’t, will I wish I did?

I mean, last time, I pretty much just laid on the couch, watched TV, and read blogs. I did pray. I do believe in that.

So.. back to the the blogs I read last time.. Speaking of blogs, during my bed rest and six-day-wait last time, I read blogs that made me cry.. So, was that sadness and crying not good for the embryos? I mean, did I create a sad home for these embryos, and was my heart, sad because of sad blogs, not open to the embryos? Did I create an unhappy place for the embryos, who as a result, needed to leave my body?

Should I only read happy blogs during the not-really-two-week-wait?

Science tells us that stress increases the cortisol hormones and other neurochemicals and can restrict blood flow (which is in general, a bad thing) It's not very debated that there *is* a mind-body connection. That is believed by even non-New Agey people. But I’m trying to translate that into practical things I should and should not do or think during those six days.

.. so crying over other blogs, is that stress? And is it going to restrict blood flow? If so, not good. I need the blood a flowin’. Not AF. Just general good blood flowing around, making the embroyos implant and grow.

OK, and if I get crazy and don’t read the sad blogs, and I am so positive that I got pregnant, when do I start reading the sad blogs again? I gotta read the sad blogs. So do I just need to read two happy blogs for every sad blog? I can do that. It might require me to cut back on work, but anything to get a healthy baby, right?

For the record, we believe in prayer, and we believe in the power of miracles, but that’s not what I’m talking about here. I’m talking about meditation, focusing specifically on positive thoughts, thinking purposely for a long period of time about your embryos, avoiding any stress or sadness, taking time to honor your embryos in some special metaphysical way, all that stuff.. do you do that? Does it work?

Oh, yeah, and welcome ICLW'ers. I will post an intro to my blog tomorrow. Promise. Had to get this off my pre-transfer chest.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

i triggered tonight - transfer day set!

well, I have news to report!

i started m OPK on Monday, no surge, then Tuesday, no surge.. this morning, I really was thinking that this cycle would completely ruin any possibility of plans for the weekend.

i was stuck in meetings all morning at work, then finally at noon, i went to the bathroom and tested.

I got the surge and called my nurse coordinator. She said come in at 3:30, so I called Carlos and told him I'd be picking him up at 3:00, and then emailed my boss and told her I needed to run a personal errand and I had to miss the 3:00 pm meeting. (I never do this, but I really had no choice at this point.)

My lining was 10.8, the doc said anything over 8 is good. and my follicle was on the left side, and it was 19 x 20. he said that's a good sign and to trigger tonight.

i had an outing with my team, so i took carlos home, ran in and triggered and then went out. I purposely have a drink every time I go out with my team. I am so paranoid, because pregnancy is on my mind all the time, i assume it's on everyone's else's, too. I'm sure no one cares whether i drink or not, or even notices or would even suspect i was pregnant if I didn't drink. but whatever, i'm paranoid, so I have a martini.

So next Wednesday. the embryologist will call with the exact time. I'm going to ask the doctor about traveling by air on Friday. I have had a girls weekend planned for months and months with my college girlfriends. I would really like to go.

i really thought I might transfer that next Thursday, so I'd already written off the girls weekend.. but now it might happen.

So, to the blogosphere.. did you rest completely for three days after transfer? Do you think i should get on a plane on Friday after my transfer Wednesday? Carlos will carry all my luggage and not make me walk far, and I will probably get upgraded, as we are both have Super Special Titanium status on American. What do you think?

Friday, August 14, 2009

my award!

I am so late in accepting this award, but I truly felt so humbled when I received it.

I actually got the award from TWO other bloggers. I was just thrilled.

So, thanks to Slice of Pie and and Eileen, I am supposed to give the award to other blogs I have discovered recently to share the love.

So, I've found a few new blogs recently... and actually the two above are two that I would award to, and a few others that I would award already got them as well..

So... here goes my awards..

1. My Journey - this is a blog about Surrogacy. Her surrogate (who is her cousin) is pregnant! So exciting! I've been interested in surrogacy lately, because I have a freind in real life that is starting that journey, so it's been fun to read this blog. Plus I love success stories!

2. Unconventional Journey - Her first IVF cycle was cancelled, and she is now in Take 2. So far, response form one ovary has been great! So exciting to see her journey!

3. Clearing My Head - Found this one from another blog.. liked the positive spin on comments she wrote on another blog.

I look forward to IComLeaveWk, where I hope to discover more blogs.

Saturday, August 8, 2009


I cannot stop thinking about Mo and Will of Life and Love in the Petri Dish.

And now, I have just heard about Sprogblogger.

Just total sadness. Life is not fair sometimes.

Prayers and love going out to these two in their time of grief.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

AF came.. and email from the RE

Ok, so here is the Thursday update.

I woke up at 5:00 am to pee and noticed a little spotting! Woo hoo.. I don't have to wait anymore. I wasn't worried about being pregnant, sine we use condoms when we have sex. So excited! Now I have to make a calendar, but of course, I don't know which Day I will have my LH surge.

In other news, I got an email out of the blue from my RE. It was like he was just randomly thinking about us. He basically said, "I was just talking to the Embryology Lab Director and wanted to know which embryos you were interested in thawing first. Since we know which are carriers and which are "normal" you could elect to thaw the normals first."

He continues, "My recommendation is to thaw the best looking embryos first without being concerned if they are carriers or not. Obviously, carriers (like the two of you) are "normal" as well.

Anyway, I thought this was one of the most random emails ever. Completely out of the blue. I hadn't even officially started my cycle yet. There are thousands of patients at my clinic.

Anyway, this gives me an excuse to email him back and ask him about how thick my endometrial lining was last time. The more I consult Dr. Google, my theory of a hostile environment in my uterus last time is getting stronger and stronger. I just need that one data point to confirm my suspicions.

By the way, yes, we'll transfer the best looking embryos. It doesn't matter to us. I have a pretty good feeling we'll thaw them all sooner or later anyway. We'd like two children. Would be thrilled if our two children are in this set of four em-babies.

I just don't know why they are asking us now. Isn't it random? Can any of you conspiracy theorists come up with a reason?

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

nope - not here yet

I'm sure you are all on the edge of your seat wondering, has Gabby gotten her period yet?

Just kidding..

Well, i'm here to tell you the answer is no. And I'm here to admit, i'm starting to get a bit annoyed. I now need to cancel our trip home for the weekend of the 14th. I am thinking i might be able to reschedule for the weekend of the 21st, but I'm not banking on that. This is especially a bummer, becuase I was probably going to get to see one of my bestest friends and her new baby boy, which will be born any day now. They are going to have to get a webcam, whether they like it or not.

Also, I have a girls weekend planned with my college girlfriends planned for the last weekend in August. if i don't get AF today or tomorrow, it looks like the trasnfer will probably get in the way of that.

Of course, I have no idea whether I will ovulate on Day 10, 11, 12, 13, or 14... no idea, really.

I thought FET was supposed to be easier.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Talked to the Clinic This Morning

Hello -

I have no update on AF, but I still wanted to call the clinic to talk through what to expect. It had been so long since I talked with my Nurse Coordinator, It just seemed like i should call to make sure there was no surprises.

Also, a fellow blogger is doing an FET this month and goes in for a baseline right after she got AF, so I wanted to ask about that.

I also wanted to check on timing, since we are planning to take a trip home the weekend of the 14th of August. Seems like this cycle may be messing with that, wouldn't you know it? And after I talked with the Nurse, it's pretty much confirmed unless I don't get my period this week at all, it looks like Day 10 will definitely be over the weekend when I am scheduled to be home.

She says that I need to go in on the day i get my LH surge. So basically I need to be here. So we will cancel that trip.

She says no baseline appointment needed at all for this cycle. Just come in for ultrasound on the day I get my surge, that's it. And then transfer 7 days later. Hmmm..

In other news, I think I chipped a tooth last night. I made my sweet husband look inside my mouth and even take photos so I could see it too, and sure enough, it looks chipped. Great! I had planned to go to the dentist before I got pregnant, so I guess this is good. But i thought i'd have time to ask around and find a good dentist and all that. (I don't have a dentist in this city where I am spending most of my time yet) So anyway, i made an appointment for later today. So now i have to miss part of the day on my first day back. oh well.

Anyone ever done an unmedicated FET like this? I'd love to hear.. i just feel like they should see me. I don't know for what, but something.. i don't know.

Oh! And i got a little bloggy award. I'll update that next time I post. Thanks!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Waiting for AF

Hello to the long lost blogosphere!

I have been away for a while, but I am ready to be back! My body isn't yet ready to be back, though, since I expected my period yesterday, and haven't gotten it. For years, I was you-could-set-your-watch-by-me-regular, but that was of course, before I started having sex. And trying to get pregnant. I love Mother Nature.

I'm drinking Sobe lifewater like it's going out of style and checking constantly to see if I have started spotting yet, and nope, nothing. And honestly I'm not expecting it for a few days, because ever since I'm been off the pill I get massive cramps and backaches the day or two before my period starts, and I haven't gotten either one of those yet either. Unless being with abotu 60 women nonstop for the last two weeks has screwed up my cycle. (More on that in a moment.)

I wish it would just come, so I can make plans for this cycle.

I've been in a great place lately. Literally and figuratively. I spent the last two weeks in New England at an amazing two-week "mini-MBA" for Executive Women that my company sent me to. It was like summer camp, I swear. I was with 52 of the most amazing women I've ever met and the faculty and staff were wonderful. Our every whim was taken care of. We did rock climbing, pilates, yoga, kayaking, canoeing, and ate the most amazing food and Espresso Martinis, too. Oh yeah, and we learned strategy, finance, leadership, negotiation, and shareholder value from some of the best professors in the US. All in all, a brilliant time.

And a great reason not to cycle in July.

But I'm back.. and ready to cycle now. It's not like I was thinking about it a lot, but of course, put together a group of 52 30-and 40-something career women, and you're bound to find several stories of infertility, IVF, adoption, and surrogacy. And since women move so effortlessly from the professional to the personal, several of us shared stories of our journeys.

But I hadn't thought about it constantly. There honestly wasn't time to read my work email, much less the AJLI blogs that I was addicted to. I also had forgotten about the fact that my acupuncturist had said he wanted to see me 6 times before last cycle and this one. Oops..that's 6 times more than I've actually seen him.

So, on my way home, I called and booked myself for a last-minute appointment late on Friday. I'll need to write another post about how I feel about spending all this money on something I'm not sure helps at all. But whatever, I did it. And I made another appointment for next Friday.

Sorry, there is not much to report. Hopefully my next post will be tomorrow and it will say that AF is here. I really want to fill out a calendar in ink.