Sunday, November 28, 2010

So Confused

Why is everything that has to do with fertility so confusing? I mean, I consider myself to be a pretty intelligent person. but I am just puzzled.

We are in an era of self-diagnosis and therefore we feel that we can also steer our treatment. I have to admit that it may not be possible for me to cure myself. I don't know what is best. I can take advice and tips fro friends and readers, but I have a unique situation. I just need to ask lots of questions and when I don't understand, ask the doctors and nurses to explain things again.

So I am calling the nurse at the fertility clinic tomorrow. I got the prescription for clomid a long time ago. I forgot if I am supposed to come in for an ultrasound on my cycle day 13 only if I don't ovulate as indicated by an ovulation predictor kit. I may just need to come in anyway. I also forgot when exactly we are supposed know, when I start clomid.

I have a feeling I am going to need to skip this cycle and start clomid the next cycle. I may not be in town on day 13 and/or the days during that week I might need to get ultrasounds. Oh well.

I am grateful for a wonderful Thanksgiving with my husband and friends, great health insurance, and being able to go home for the holidays. So what if I have to wait to start the meds for another month. In the grand scheme of things, it really is no big deal.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Such a Good Day!

Today has been fabulous! I got my hair cut and colored by my wonderful stylist. She makes the visits so fun and relaxing and she has been through it all with trying to concieve her 3 year old and the one on the way. She is a wealth of info and always makes me feel better as I leave.

Then I went into Bellevue to do some shopping and get Digby his favorite treats. While we were there, Jeremy was wearing a Syracuse sweatshirt. We heard a gal say, "Syracuse," so we stopped to chat. She and her husband grew up in Syracuse and her family lives 3 streets down from mine. They own the local Chinese take-out place that I have ordered from more times than I can count. She even went to my high school. I am assuming she graduated after me. They looked young. The couple also went to RIT, where Jeremy went to college. We would have exchanged info, but they are moving to Boston. We also shared how people always say to us, "You're from NY? You don't have an accent." FYI, people from the city and Long Island (Lawn Guyland) have accents, not people from way upstate like us. Small World!

Then, on our way out of the mall, Jeremy ran into his previous boss who had 2 extra tickets to a private showing of Harry Potter. He offered those babies to us and we accepted. It was great!

Then, when I got home, I saw that Lisa passed along my blog and now I have way more readers and even some followers. Big hugs for Lisa! I feel so grateful and lucky too! Thanks for reading and passing this blog along!! Now that I have more of an audience, I am certainly feeling the support and the love.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


I called the endocrinologist this morning and spoke with a nurse. She said that the doctor is raising my dosage of thyroid meds (not expected, but whatever) and I am changing meds for the prolactin level (expected and appreciated that the plan from my last appointment was on my file and being carried out without having to remind them).

I am so happy that I have gotten such a great response from the blog so far. Most people are writing me privately. Thanks for reading! My motivations for writing this blog are mostly selfish. I feel like I need support. I know there are so many websites where I can join groups etc. Those were not my cup of tea. I feel like the groups were filled with Debbie Downers and I found reading them draining instead of empowering. No thank you.

Many friends have described me as brave for sharing my story. For those of you who know me well, you know I respond to compliments as follows: "I know!" or "I am wonderful, aren't I?" or something else equally modest. But brave...I just don't see myself that way. Thanks nonetheless.

I also have a request so that this blog really begins to work for me the way I would like. Will you please send the link to anyone you know who is having or has had similar issues? I would love to be able to share with others going on a similar journey presently or previously. Please also comment on the blog, instead of privately, so I look like I have more readers :). Of course, if something is very personal and you don't feel comfortable commenting publicly, feel free to always write me personally. I understand and I appreciate your support.

Monday, November 15, 2010

The Stick

For those of you who have not tried to get pregnant and use an ovulation kit, this is how they work. Usually, you buy a pack of sticks and pee on a stick for 7 days mid cycle to find when you have an LH surge which indicates ovulation. The 7 pack doesn't work for me.

How often do I pee on a stick? Lately, everyday single day. Jealous? Since I can't figure out when I am ovulating, I bought an ovulation kit with 20 sticks. I started on day 5 of my cycle and I am on stick #16, no ovulation yet. I hate those sticks. They never show me what I want to see. Stupid sticks, stupid body. I tried to chart my basal body temperature. That was even worse. Everyday I would turn off my alarm, stick a thermometer in my mouth and wait to hear the beep indicating I could finally get up and use the restroom. The temperatures did not show the typical trend, surprise surprise. So I pee, and I hope every morning that I will ovulate. And I am disappointed every morning. How do you start your day?

I am pretty good at shaking it off and starting my day on a positive note. At least I try. It is getting harder lately.

When I got home today, I had a message from my doctor's office about my blood test. Of course I can't get the info until tomorrow because they are closed now. The results won't mean that much, just tell me if the meds for my thyroid are working or if I need an adjustment. I will have to remind them that the doc, who is on maternity leave, wants to change my meds for prolactin now too. You read correctly, maternity leave. How dare she? Well, I remember that the meds I will be changing to have fewer side effects and I will take fewer pills. Instead of 3 twice a day, I will take one, 4 times a week. That will be nice. I don't like being so dizzy and taking so many pills. They bother my stomach and give me the worst acid reflux. Hopefully that will get better too. I feel like an old lady, talking about my meds.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

I Have an Issue and I Need a Tissue

One of my students once said that to another student. I had to laugh. Too funny!

What is not wrong with me really? I have never claimed to be normal. I have always kind of danced to my own beat and appreciated my own humor. That is just me.

As far as my fertility, I have a few problems.

  1. I have a small benign tumor on my pituitary gland. It secretes too much of a hormone called prolactin. I have known about this for 11 years. I have had meds adjusted and changed, but nothing will get my hormone level into the normal range. The hormone imbalance causes me to have irregular or absent periods. The good news is that the tumor is so small that it is undetectable on an MRI. My endocrinologists have always tried to have me tolerate enough medicine to regulate my system. However, I am still not getting regular periods. At this time, I am changing medicines after I get the results of a blood test I had on Thursday. The only reason I am on the current medicine is because it was thought to be safer than the other when trying to conceive. Further studies have shown that the 1st medicine is safer than doctors thought. Since my body responded better to the 1st medicine, I will most likely switch back to that.
  2. I have Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. I was diagnosed in April during the 1st visit to the fertility clinic. This also messes with my hormones and causes me to have high androgen levels, which in turn causes irregular menses. Do we see a trend here? People with PCOS can also be insulin resistant. I am not. I cannot take anything for the PCOS while trying to conceive. It is often treated with birth control pills.
  3. I have a slightly under active thyroid. This diagnosis occurred 3 months ago. I am on a very low dose to regulate my thyroid function. My endocrinologist said that being on thyroid medicine may give me just the boost I need to get pregnant. One can hope.

What now?

The reproductive endocrinologist at the fertility clinic gave me lots of options in April (acupuncture, nutritionist, lose weight to spontaneously regain menses and ovulation, Clomid- a drug to force ovulation). Up until now, I have chosen the natural route. Can you blame me? I take enough medicine! I saw a nutritionist who specializes in PCOS. I am working with a personal trainer, which is super expensive, but we are viewing the expense as necessary for our ultimate goal. I love working out with her. She is amazing and I am getting so strong! I have lost 14 lbs very slowly. Yay me! I also see an acupuncturist who specializes in fertility. She is great too! But still no baby.

So, I guess it is time to start Clomid. I turned 34 last month, so it is time.

All That She Wants (the very 1st post)

Um...well...this is hard for me to write, but I need to write it. This is my very first post on my very first personal blog. And well, I am going to share something very personal.

Deep breath.

So here goes...

No drumroll please...

I am having trouble conceiving a baby.

There, I said it. This is harder than I thought it was going to be, as the tears have already filled my eyes. I don't dare say the "i" word, but that is how I am described in the medical community since I have been trying to conceive for well over a year. What is wrong? Well, I think that may be a post unto itself.

But my troubles brought me to a fertility clinic. What was the song playing in the waiting room while waiting for my very first appointment? "All That She Wants, " by Ace of Base. I just had to smile and shake my head. Now I know, I know, there is a debate about what the baby in this song actually means. Is it a child? another boyfriend? Who knows? I just don't care- to be honest. I think that music/poetry/lyrics are for the listener or reader to interpret for themselves. For me, on that very day, nerves shot and anxiously awaiting some sort of solution, it meant a child.

It is all I want.