Monday, July 27, 2009

Gearing up for Operation Human Pincushion!

Ok so last week, week number two of our IVF cycle, was just flat out exhausting. Not so much because of the meds or any one thing about IVF specifically... it was more that it was extremely stressful. Stress which I want to keep at a minimum more than ever right now.

As with the rest of the U.S. economy in the past year, profits are down significantly for the company I work for. Since there are only about 12 of us here, there's not a lot of room for variance. We were told last Friday that things had to change immediately just so that we all have a chance at keeping our jobs. The biggest change that affects me is that my boss will now not be doing any creative design work from this point forward. In the past, we're nearly shared the workload. As you can imagine, this could, and most likely will, affect me in a big way. And here is where the stress comes in.

On Tuesday, I saw my first official side effect of being on Lupron. It seems that it makes a stressful situation about 80x worse than it normally is. I could feel my blood pressure rising and was *this* close to saying "WHATEVER!"and just walking out of a meeting - total out of body experience. Luckily, we broke for lunch which gave me the chance to run home, get a bite to eat and do some yoga and deep breathing. I honestly don't think I would have been able to make it through the afternoon (with a job anyway :P) otherwise.

My plan with work is to just try taking things day by day and not to get consumed by the long, long list of projects on my to-do list. I cannot let this work stuff affect our success. I will not!

Now for the fun stuff!
Tuesday, I woke up early and made my way to have my E2 blood drawn before 8am, as instructed. Then, Thursday, AF showed up, as anticipated, and I was due for my baseline ultrasound scan at 11 am. Both turned out wonderful! My E2 was nice and low, meaning no functional cysts present. Apparently, if one of these were to exist, all of the FSH/stim drugs that we will be injecting next week would have went directly to that functional cyst, instead of to devleoping healthy follicles. Didn't know that and found it very intersting, even though, thankfully, it doesn't apply to me.

Onto good news number two: The scan revealed, as Dr. Ahlering put it "Lots and lots and lots and lots of follicles" on my ovary. By his expression, I think he saw more than he thought he would because he said he was going to primitively step down the dosage of Follistim that begins next week. Instead of it being 225 IU for each of the 6 days, it will now start out at 225 IU for 3 days, then go down to 150 for two days, and only 75 on the final day. If he kept me at where I was at, we'd end up risking severe hyperstimulation, which we don't want.

He also commented that it looked like my left ovary and what remains of my right ovary appeared to be on top of one another (further confirming things are all jacked up in there!), but didn't seem concerned about it - just made the observation. I asked him if it still looked as though the left ovary was glued to my uterus and he said for sure. You could see the follicle filled ovary and the curvature of my uterus right up next to each other and it didn't budge a bit when he poked it with the ultrasound wand. I asked if it would be a concern once I did get pregnant and he said no - that sort of thing isn't super uncommon.

All in all, I left that office feeling so darn good!
When he walked in, he greeted me with a warm smile and a tone of calm. The first thing out of his mouth other than "hello, good to see you" was "are we ready to get you a big round belly?" That just put a huge smile on my face. Totally unexpected, but you could tell it was a tone of excitement that mirrored why I was there that day. And then, a simple thing that I've had no other doctor do before during an exam... After the scan was complete - me still lying on my back totally exposed (we all know how fun that is) - he extended his hand as a gesture to help me sit back up and regain my dignity. Usually, I'm left feeling like "ok, we're done, but you're still down there talking to me and this is awkward". :) Simple things like that go such a long way for me!

Follistim, here we come!
Going into this next week, I'll continue doing the Lupron injection in the AM, keep taking dexamethasone & my prenatal, and then on Tuesday, we'll add the Follistim injection in the evening. I'll be well on my way to becoming a human pincushion! :)

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Anonymous July 27, 2009 at 9:41 AM  

Oh Cathy what a great news on the basal scan!! The plan sounds great actually, they did the same here, you start on a little higher dose for three days (I was on 250) and then reduce it down. Apparently the 3 days on higher dose work by recruiting follicles and then the rest is to get the strongest to grow.
And the job situation must be really hard..doing yoga is the best thing at the moment and I agree, take a day at a time and hopefully it'll all go well. Big hugs, Fran

Jess July 27, 2009 at 3:37 PM  

What great glad you are feeling good! Can't wait to see the BFP!!

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