Saturday, 30 November 2013

Another one bites the dust...

Yep- BFN. I started spotting at 11dp2dt and my cervix felt hard and low when I put my progesterone pessary in. I tested yesterday morning (12dp2dt) and there was no trace of a second line on the urine pregnancy test. I feel tired. What next? From what I can tell with repeated implantation failure it is either an embryo quality issue or a uterine receptivity issue. I am frustrated with our clinics preference for 2 day embryos as I want to know what our embryos would do past this phase. Are they even reaching blastocyst or are they arresting at 2-3 days? Are they hatching? Why aren't they implanting? I have arranged for us to have a DQ alpha match test through the doctor we consulted with about natural killer cells. I'm torn between continuing with FET's using our remaining embryos as I worry that it won't work. My thoughts are we should change clinics and move to Monash IVF in Melbourne- where they specialise in blastocyst transfer. I want to know if it is an embryo issue or whether it is an issue with my uterine receptivity so we can look at our options. We have discussed donor embryos, donor eggs and donor sperm and even though these avenues are complicated we both know we are open to what we need to do. We have also discussed surrogacy; which is quite a challenging process in Australia. I have started looking into overseas clinics in India and Thailand and like the look of the Surragocy Centre India. I hope so much that I can carry a child that is biologically mine and my husbands but I think we have to start looking at other options.

Saturday, 23 November 2013

6dp2dt...mind games of the 2WW

Ohhhhhh the wonderful two week wait. A time of over-analysing everything you do and feel. Am I moving around too much or not enough? Am I eating enough protein or so much that it will affect my liver qi? Can I drink this cold drink or will it pull warmth away from my uterus? How much caffeine is actually in a small piece of chocolate? If I just eat half a chocolate ball will that be ok? Is my pessary just leaking the wax coating or is all the progesterone coming out too? Did my cat just jump too hard on my stomach? Did I get too hot when I went for that walk? Should I put sunscreen on when I go outside or do I need the vitamin D? If I wear sunscreen then do I still take my vitamin D supplement? Aaaaarrrgh!!!!! I'm trying to keep distracted and relaxed but it is nearly impossible. There is so much riding on an IVF cycle...and so much responsibility as the person carrying your precious embryo. Oh how I hope this is the time it works. I hope we can be pregnant for Christmas. We've decided to test next weekend at home before the beta blood test on Monday 2nd December. Please let the time go fast...

Monday, 18 November 2013

Frozen Embryo Transfer (FET)

We had our FET at about 1pm today. The embryo thawed successfully and maintained its pre-thaw rating of 8 out of 10. We had a new doctor doing the transfer today- he was really funny and made me feel much more relaxed than I was last time. After the transfer he had to insert my progesterone pessary and I panicked as we were leavings the clinic as the waxy coating melted and I felt a gush of liquid down below. I was worried that the embryo had "fallen out" but had to remind myself to be rational and resist the crazy paranoia...I needed to give myself a few days at least before all the mind games started ;)

So now I'm officially in the two week wait (2WW). My beta is on Monday 2nd December and I highly doubt that I will be unable to resist the temptation to pee on a stick before then. I know the next fortnight will be a roller coaster but I'm going to try enjoy the feeling of being pregnant until proven otherwise :)

Friday, 15 November 2013

Getting closer to our FET- intralipids, endometrial lining and a birthday

I've been in a pretty low place recently. I thought it would get easier but I have to say it's been really tough. Having a birthday this week didn't help as it was a reminder of how long we've been doing this for. I thought I would be trying for my second baby by now but what can you do? I've made a Pinterest board full of infertility inspirations and reflections that help me stay positive (if anyone is interested it is under TTC A Family). My intralipid infusion was on my birthday. Due to the fact that it was the first infusion ever done at my clinic they were writing protocols and organising the procedure right up until the day but luckily everything all went smoothly. They had a lot of difficulty getting my canular in but once that happened and some saline was flushed through I was given 300ml of the milky white liquid- which took just over 3 hours. I felt quite sleepy during the infusion but otherwise felt fine. Despite the fact I have been trying to be healthy I had McDonald's fries and a lemonade on the way home from the infusion. I suppose I figured if I was having that much fat (from the intralipids) I may as well go the whole hog and top it off with some greasy food!). I was reading up on natural killer cells over the subsequent days and started to panic when I read about DQ alpha matches and how they can influence natural killer cells and prevent the embryo from implanting. The recommended plan for partial DQ alpha matches is a single embryo transfer. While we haven't had this test I was concerned that if this was a problem for us we shouldn't proceed with a double embryo transfer. I rang the doctor that diagnosed my natural killer cells and while he said the area was controversial he suggested doing a single embryo transfer and then doing the DQ alpha testing if this cycle was also unsuccessful. It was a surprisingly difficult pill to swallow. Even though the decision to do a double embryo transfer was a difficult one I had started to look forward to the thought of having more than one embryo to 'take care of'. Despite this adjustment to our plan I was thrilled when the nurse said that my endometrial lining was 10mm during my ultrasound and that our FET was scheduled for the following Monday (18th November). As we get closer I'm starting to relax and look forward to the transfer. I know that the time after transfer will be tough- and tougher still if we get another BFN- but we just have to keep crossing those bridges as we come to them.

Monday, 11 November 2013


When we started this journey to conceive I had a clear picture in my head of being pregnant, giving birth, breast-feeding my child and watching on proudly as my husband held him or her to his chest. I could see two or three children running to meet their dad at the front door when he returned home from work and crowd around him as he leant over to kiss me. I started to buy things for our 'babies' even before we started trying-a jumpsuit here and a squeeze toy there- and then when we began to try to get pregnant I decided to purchase bigger things- a cot, a bassinet, a baby carrier and many other baby-related items. I was excited and told myself I was budgeting cleverly by spreading my purchases out while I was working so that we wouldn't have so many expenses when I was on maternity leave. I never told anyone and hid my purchases around the house. I would look through them every few weeks and feel excited by the thought that it wouldn't be long before the dream of a family became a reality. But as the months dragged on and no pregnancy arrived I stopped looking at all the baby gear. I had to start wiping the dust off the cot hidden under our bed and stopped unzipping the suitcase filled with tiny baby clothes and burp cloths to look at them. I felt embarrassed by the thought that I had a house full of baby things and no baby. That my pregnant friends had less baby items than me. With each new fertility treatment or plan I felt a renewed sense of hope that I would be able to start my longed-for nursery but each time we received the news that we had not been successful I felt the images of my future children fading. In the past few weeks I have started to see a future that doesn't have children and it scares me to death. How much longer can we go on with these treatments? Will this ever work for us? Will we be the unlucky ones who can never have children- even with IVF? We know for sure that six viable embryos have been created; one during our first IVF and five during our second. Two out of the six embryos have been transferred and four remain. I thought a lot about those embryos tonight...if they are they beginnings of a person...a potential baby...does that make me a mother? Do you only become a mother when you give birth? Maybe it's when you're officially pregnant? But when describing the relationship of the embryos to me I would like to think I am the 'mother'. The thought of that brings the image of my children back to my mind- if only for a few seconds before my heart closes itself for protection...