Wednesday, 13 April 2016

Getting ready to cycle

We are slowly gearing up for this last IVF cycle. Murray is on school holidays for the next two weeks, and I had a day of annual leave which was fortuitous because I have had a nasty cold or flu bug this last couple of days.

We went to the clinic this morning and Murray gave his second sperm sample for use in IVF, and I picked up all my medications. It's all starting to get very real.

Our pastor prayed for us today about us having children. We were meeting to formally become members of our new church that we have been attending this past year since we moved house, and one of the things we talked about was what a blessing it has been for Murray and I to have had 12 years together, 10 married, to build our relationship before kids have arrived. While parts of this have been awful and depressing, in the light days, I can see that there are also benefits, and I am grateful for those.

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Easter Refreshment

This Easter has been such a blessing to me. I have been able to take a much needed break from work - 5 whole days! I spent time with nearly all of my family, and also some one-on-one time with Murray. We went to Church on Good Friday and Easter Sunday and were blessed with catching up with friends we hadn't seen in a while.

My soul feels refreshed.

Saturday, 12 March 2016

Myoinositol research

Part of the last hoorah effort is Myo-inositol. While there isn't definitive proof that it helps, the early research definitely shows it as a positive, and there is no down side to it.

I've included some information from different sources about what it does and how they think it helps.

Firstly, it actually used to be known as B6. Then the powers that be changed their definitions of what a vitamin actually is (something that the body does not naturally produce), and therefore as the body can produce inositol, it was removed from that list.

PCOS Diva has a really good post on Myo-inositol which is worth reading.


Effects of myo-inositol supplementation on oocyte's quality in PCOS patients: a double blind trial.
This trial showed that the number of eggs and then embryos transferred was increased when myo-inositol was taken.

Myo-Inositol in Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome - Supplement acts as a natural insulin sensitizer in PCOS patients
It acts as an insulin-sensitizing agent - perfect for PCOS patients who have insulin resistance like me

For me it is worth a shot. It was $28 a bottle which will last for a month. Fingers crossed it makes a difference.

Monday, 7 March 2016

Family weekend

I went to my Oma's funeral on Friday. While of course it was sad, it ended up being a really lovely weekend with the extended family. The service was beautiful, I caught up with my aunts, uncles and cousins, as well as my Dad and brother, and we got to see a lot of the places that either my Oma and Opa lived, or where my Dad spent time when he was younger.There was also a lot of looking at old photos and sharing memories.


Monday, 22 February 2016

My Oma


My Oma passed away this morning aged 92.
I'm sad but I am also happy that she is finally in heaven with my Opa.
Rest in peace Oma.

Sunday, 21 February 2016

Generosity

My husband works with the most amazing group of people.

Last week he wasn't feeling so great after our IVF appointment, and a few people could see that he had stuff on his mind. When he told them about the chance to freeze his samples prior to IVF but that it would cost $600, they were sympathetic and really lovely to him. Nothing unusual there, they are a great bunch of people.

Then on Friday, his boss and another colleague came up to him and handed him a little red envelope, like what they give out for Chinese New Year. In it was over $700 in cash! His workmates had gotten together and decided they wanted to help to take the stress away and had come up with the money themselves!

I mean, who does that! Their amazing generosity, completely unexpected, has made something that was going to be a struggle, into something that could really increase our chances with our last IVF cycle. I have cried several times since at what an incredible gift this has been.

There is going to be lots of homemade cake in the future for staff morning teas!

Friday, 19 February 2016

No babies places in 6 months

I spoke with the adoption agency earlier this week to find out any news on the adoption front. As usual they couldn't tell me anything, but they did say that no babies had been placed since I last spoke with them in October. At that point they hadn't placed any babies for some time either, so it has been at least 6 months since a placement was made.

My hopes are low at this point

Thursday, 18 February 2016

Permanent foster care predicament

We had a really emotional weekend. We were approached by somebody who belongs to our previous church about potentially fostering a 10 year old girl.

Her story isn't ours to tell, but she needed a home, and our names came up as potential foster parents, likely on a permanent basis.

 

It was completely out of left field. First we had to consider if we could practically do it. We have a spare room set up, we wouldn't need additional furniture, the local primary school is just down the road, we can arrange for me to work school hours etc. So the practicalities of it weren't a deal-breaker.


So then it came down to, is this actually something we want to do? And is it the right circumstances for us?

We prayed hard. We discussed lots of different angles. We listened to each other's thoughts. We argued. We hugged.

In the end, we came to the decision that it was not right for us. The deal breaker was that it would take away our adoption approval, and that is a hurdle that neither of us were able to get past.

 

It really stirred some things up for us around parenting. Murray has always looked forward to having an older child – helping them with their homework and after school sports, after all he is a high school teacher. Whereas I crave the baby and young child stages – teaching them their alphabet and taking them to the zoo to see an elephant for the first time. Murray was much more okay with the potential fostering situation than I was because it fit his needs, but it would have been a huge loss for me, to miss those stages of parenting.

 

I know some might see the decision as selfish, hell so do I. But I'm okay with the decision, which is all I have to be.

It has definitely opened our minds to the potential of doing long term/permanent foster care down the road if an adoption doesn't eventuate.

Tuesday, 16 February 2016

IVF again


 

We had our appointment with the specialist yesterday and have a plan for our last cycle.

We discussed a couple of options, but considering this is our final round (really, truly, last cycle, nothing more), this is what we are going for:

·         Increasing Puregon dose to 150iu per day. Last cycle's egg collection was on day 17 which I feel is too late so we are going to try for a faster rise hopefully and go to egg collection between day 12 and 14

·         We aren't going to do the Endo scratch again. Yes the success rates appear to be higher, but our Dr seems pretty certain it's the embryo quality and not my uterus that is the issue

·         I am going to try a couple of different supplements. I have already started taking COQ10 150mg a day, but am adding in Metformin 500mg 3 times a day, and also Myo inositol 2g twice a day. I've order the inositol from iherb.com which was only $28 so worth adding in to the stuff I already take (Folic Acid, B12 and Fish oil). My Dr thinks that Myo inositol can't hurt and possibly could do good so happy for me to try it.

·         Finally, Murray is going to give two samples and have them tested and frozen over March and April, so that if on the day his sample is poor, we can use one of the backup samples instead and use the one with the best possible stats. This costs $600 with no rebate for the freezing, but it is worth us doing, and because there are no other out of pocket costs besides the supplements, we can afford to try it.

 

So we are going to wait 3 months for the supplements to do their thing and for Murray to give his samples, and then cycle in May.

We both feel like this is giving it all that we have, and are ready to let it go after this. For a while I didn't even want to give this another try but in the end I couldn't turn down a free cycle after all the money that we have spent over the years on fertility treatment.

Friday, 22 January 2016

Fertility Friend

After all this time, I still track my cycles. Nowadays everyone has apps on their phone, but pre-iPhone (gosh, we really have been trying for a long time!), I used to hope on my PC first thing in the morning, log on to Fertility Friend and type in my temperature and any signs that I had that day.

Now I don't bother with temperature tracking - I am much more in tune to my body's signals around ovulation and my period, but it was definitely helpful in the first few years. It's also a lot easier because FF has an app on my phone, so I don't even have to go to the computer anymore.

Why is any of this important? Well, FF also gives me statistics. And who doesn't love a good stat?

This cycle is number 100 of trying to conceive. 28 June 2006 was the first day of our first cycle which means we are coming to 10 years of, well, all of this. Not exactly something to celebrate, but certainly a reminder of the journey that has taken place.

Thursday, 21 January 2016

Professional photos from our 10 year vow renewal

Back in November I wrote about our 10th wedding anniversary and how we chose to renew our wedding vows. I realised tonight that I never posted our proper photos, only a couple of blurry mobile phone shots. Rectifying that now!

We had picnic blankets, parasols and fans





Add caption

All of my work friends

We hired a face painter to entertain all of the kids - it was a hit!


Us with some of our nieces and nephews

Wednesday, 20 January 2016

Things to speak with the FS about

I am putting together a list of things to talk to our specialist about when we meet with her on February 15.
  • During our last embryo transfer, she mentioned something about some herbs that have shown some promising results, but as my legs were in stirrups I wasn't exactly retaining that knowledge! Hopefully I can find out more about that.
  • If DHEA is worthwhile for PCOS patients. Even though I seem to get lots of eggs, the quality is poor, and I am interested to know if DHEA would help in this
  • Any other herbs or supplements that she recommends
  • Whether regular ejaculation is a yay or nay before giving the sample. Murray's great results were after infrequent ejaculation, but we were told in the standard IVF literature we received to ejaculate every second day prior to giving a sample, which of course was our worst result, so I am hesitant to follow that advice again
  • Is it worth trying the endo scratch again? Man it hurt like crazy, but the results do suggest that it improves the odds significantly. 
  • Would a different style of cycle work? I've been doing FFSH with Orgalutran, but perhaps a down reg cycle with Lucrin instead of Syneral would work better (I wont agree to a Syneral cycle as the nose spray gives me horrific migraines, I would have to be on bed rest for the whole cycle).