10dp3dt Another Wait Almost Over

So here we are, deep into the two week wait….2ww if you’re in the know. Specifically we’re 10dp3dt (10 days past 3 day transfer if you’re not in the know).  The time has passed pretty well, some days pass slowly, some quickly and I’ve kept myself busy with distractions: plenty of movies (Go see Gravity in 3D already!), some delicious home cookin’ and lots of knitting.

Hey look! Pictures:

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Yes, I could take a home pregnancy test, but why do that to myself? The blood test at the doctor’s office is much more definitive and for me, that’s a safer bet for my emotional well-being.  If you’re one of those folks who start peeing on a stick right after the transfer or as soon as the test “might” detect pregnancy hormones – good for you! For me, that would make me crazy and these days (especially these days) I’m all about what’s best for me. Keep peeing on your sticks ladies, but I won’t be joining you.

As for symptoms I’m not reading into anything, as I’ve been giving myself shots of progesterone in oil (PIO for anyone who cares) since the night of the retrieval and added estradiol/estrogen pills nightly since the 8th….so really, ANYTHING I’m feeling could easily be attributed to DRUGS not normally in my person.  However, just to put it out there, the last few days I’ve felt short periods of mild cramping and today extended periods (like since I woke up) of mild cramping, some odd gastrointestinal mischief, some slight overall “blahness” and maybe some additional sleepiness.

But again – symptomatic of what we’re hoping for or just side effects of meds?

Who’s to say?

On a plus note, I have my Progesterboobs back. Progesterboobs are boobs you get as a result of progesterone. It’s like magic. They’re just noticeably a bit….fuller. I’ll take ’em.

And I’ll say it again with these progesterone shots: LET THE NEEDLE DO THE WORK. None of this jabbing and sticking and running start business. I quite literally rest the needle on my fanny cheek, gently (GENTLY!!!) push and wait…..and wait a little more…..after a few seconds, it just sinks in and there’s barely any discomfort. I in no way think I have an exceedingly high pain threshold – I just think I’ve found a pretty efficient fairly pain-free scenario. Also, no men in the bathroom during shot time – it just prolongs the issue and adds to the tension and discomfort. I know it’s all “for better and for worse” but if there’s ANY chance you can get yourself to the point of doing your own shots: DO IT. YOU ARE ALREADY A ROCKSTAR FOR GOING THROUGH IVF. Once you can give yourself shots YOU ARE UNSTOPPABLE!

Needle rant finished. Sorry.

Monday morning I’ve got a blood test that’ll give us our “move forward” information:  1) yay we’re pregnant and we move forward as pregnant people or 2) we’re not pregnant and we talk to The Russian about what to do next…..stay with her, see someone else she recommends, try something different, try the same thing.  Our insurance allows us up to 4 tries (bless that Illinois mandate) so we’ll try again right away if need be.

2 more sleeps until we know which way we’re headed.

Needle Rant and Updates to Protocol

Last night was my first night of shots for this cycle – stims as we say in the biz, short for stimulation meds/stimulation cycle.


That’s Menopur on top, Lupron in the middle and Follistim on the bottom.

The mixing of the Menopur is what takes the longest and though they’ve told me to use 1ml of water I always put a bit extra in there, like another .1ish.

My little 3 shot cocktail went peachy keen fine and yet again it’s all about LETTING THE NEEDLE DO ALL THE WORK!!!!  I cannot emphasize this enough – just rest it on your skin, press gently and the needle will quite literally sink into the skin, (and for me is) almost pain free.  All this jabbing and getting a running start is all movie show – the needle’s so tiny and sharp – just let it do it all.  I read all about the pressure and build-up ladies are putting on themselves to do these shots and for reals the anticipation is the WORST – so just skip that part and don’t over-think it. Prep those shots, rest the needles on the skin, gently press and it’s in.

Alright, rant done.

Oh, and for me, doing these shots myself is very empowering and now that I’m used to them, it’s a fairly quick process.  My hubbo always yells, “I’m proud of you!” from the other room and though he’s always said he’d help with the shots, I’m glad he doesn’t.  I think he’d be far more worried about hurting me and the shots would end up taking longer and hurting more.  I had to get myself over the psychological hurdle of doing the shots and I am now flat out proud of myself every time I do them.  I know it’s a way for husbands to be involved in the process, but I do wonder if it ends up making it harder.

Alright, rant done.

Also, I’m genuinely sorry if these shots are super painful for you or maybe you just can’t do them alone.  That blows.

Alright, rant done for real this time.

There’ll be some subtle differences to this next protocol, at least for starters. I’m adding dexamethasone (which is a steroid) in pill form once a day. There’s limited information on its use on the interwebs, so this is what I’ve pieced together from the internet and also from talking with The Russian’s Right Hand.

  • it doesn’t so much do things specifically by itself but enhances how the other drugs work
  • it can hopefully lead to better quality eggs and more of them by tempering how the body responds to the introduction of all the other drugs. i.e. the drugs can do what they do while the dexamethasone waves it’s arms around and says, “hey look over here for awhile, pay no attention to what those drugs are doing, look at this shiny object instead!” (I like to imagine the dexamethosone shaking a tiny set of keys as a distraction).
  • perhaps helps the body to not react to the re-introduced embryo as “foreign matter” i.e. the body can reject those things that it feels shouldn’t be there…. so basically the dexamethosone says, “hey don’t be a bitch about this, just leave that little emby be.”

I’ve read that it can cause insomnia in some folks so I’m taking that pill in the morning.  It’s not something that everyone needs, but after reviewing how I responded to everything last cycle The Russian feels I’m a good candidate.

I will also start off with a lower dose of Follistim this time….I may still get bumped up over the course of the stimulation cycle, but we’ll see how it goes.

I’m curious to see the differences between this cycle and the last. Old glass-half-full McGee here is hoping for a) very few side effects yet again and b) a bit better output on the eggs collected vs eggs fertilized ratio. I was also pretty slow and steady last time on the follicle growth so I wonder again if I’ll go 13 days of stims or more/less.

I’m back to knitting a bunch which is VERY therapeutic – right now I’m making some socks for me, some boot toppers, a baby blanket for one of my besties who’s due in December (so I’ve some time on that) and a scarf that a pal commissioned me to make.  Since it’s Chicago, winter could come at any time so I ought to get on that.

Sorry about that needle rant…..but don’t make it awful if it doesn’t have to be!!!!

Clearly I can’t let this go…..