Saturday, September 22, 2012

1st Shot

So this brings us to our 1st IUI.  I guess I should back track a little and say yes I am the one trying to carry our baby.  G would like to carry as well but we decided to try with me first.  I have 3 IUIs (lifetime max) covered by my insurance.  G was going through a lot of work changes (new company and new promotions) so it wasn't the best for her to try now not knowing if she could get time off or what insurance she would have. 

I started 50 mg clomid the end of Feb 2011 with high hopes that I was making a lot of eggs.  We had even had the discussion of multiples and what we would do if we got pregnant with 2, 3 or even more.  We had a plan we were comfortable with and agreed with.  Because Dr. G wanted to save on cost for her clients she normally doesn't do ultrasounds (U/S) till day 10 or 11 of the cycle.  This concerned me because they wanted me to buy and have the sperm delivered the day of my U/S.  The sperm cost 900 with shipping so if this cycle had to be cancelled I didn't want to also pay to ship it back and store it.  I called the office to explain this and the nurse told me this was the doctors policy and there was nothing we could do.  So I ordered and had it shipped with a bad feeling.  This caused her to have the nick name "Mean Nurse". 

We went for our U/S on Feb 28th.  I was very nervous and my nightmare came true.  As Mean Nurse is doing the U/S she tells us there is only one follicle in the one ovary (18mm) and the other one has a cyst.  She said she thought the Doc would cancel the cycle.  Of course I was mad and sad.  I told her "I told you so!" and cried.  She said "we can ship the sperm back and try again next month everything will be fine."  I said " no its not will cost us over 400 dollars to ship it back, store it, and then ship it again...are you going to pay that?"  She left and I sobbed in Gs arms.  I guess Mean Nurse thought we would be following her and when we didn't leave the room she came back in and said "I don't know why you're so upset"  and she was wanting to show us how to do the trigger shot (ovidrel) just in case we did do the IUI.  G went out with her to learn because she knew I wanted to rip the nurse's head off.  You would think a person who deals with hormonal women on a daily basis would be more understanding.  We left and soon the nurse was calling to say the doc wanted to do the IUI.  I wondered if she had told her how upset I was and they were scared not to do it.  G and I talked it over.  We didn't want to waste all the money shipping it, but we didn't want to waste one of our IUI tries.  We decided we would try since we did have one good follicle and it only takes one right? 

G had to give me the trigger shot because I am not good with needles...something which I thought I had explained to G but I guess not!  Mean Nurse told G I had to be sitting up during the shot so that there was something to grab onto to give the shot since I am thin.  I told G I wanted to lay down (again thinking I had told her I faint during shots) but she insisted we do it as we were told.  I remember prepping for the shot then waking up in a sweat with G freaking out on the phone saying something like "I don't know the name of the was a fertility drug."  She had called 911 thinking she had killed me.  I was able to say ovidrel and that I was okay.  She told them we were okay and they didn't need to come.  G was obviously very worried, but upset I hadn't told her that could happen.  Honestly I thought she knew!!  So to this day she refuses to give me my shots which makes things difficult.

Anyways we go in for the IUI March 3rd.  The doc has me sign papers and shows me our sperm vial with 4034 on it.  Tells me the numbers for it.  I can't remember now, but the sperm count and mobility was good.  We were shocked how little sperm you get for the cost.  Now we had a 2ww (two week wait) before we knew if it worked.  After a week I went for blood work to check my progesterone.  It was good meaning I had ovulated...good news!  Around day 10 I began doing what everyone going through this is told not to do but still does....I started peeing on a stick hoping for a BFP but only saw BFNs.  I was having what I thought was "pregnancy symptoms"  I even googled them every day (again something you shouldn't do but we all do it anyways).  But really how would I know what the symptoms are like I've never been pregnant! I still hadn't gotten my period after 2 weeks so I was still hopeful even after my blood work, but a few hours before I get the results I got my period.  I of course cried even when I got the call with the bad news.  I felt like I had lost a baby....a baby I was never even pregnant with.  G doesn't really show emotion, but of course she was disappointed as well.  The whole 2 weeks we had acted like I was pregnant.  No heavy lifting, no caffeine or alcohol, and G couldn't smoke around me.  She was actually even working on quiting.  We decided to take a month off and make an appt to talk to Dr. G about what we would try next. 

Friday, September 21, 2012

Where We Started

G and I always knew that we wanted to have kids.  G has two sisters and they have 5 children.  We have them a lot and enjoy being Aunts.  Like I said earlier we knew that there were ways we could still have babies and we were sure that it wouldn't be hard.  My friend had 4 IUIs and got pregnant 3 times one was a miscarriage but she has 2 beautiful girls.  So I thought "well then how hard can it be?"  I thought it would take maybe 3 IUIs at most!  I guess I should probably explain what IUIs are and more on the fertility process for some who might be new at this or for you lucky people that never have to go through all this!

IUI - Intrauterine insemination - is performed by threading a very thin flexible catheter through the cervix and injecting washed sperm directly into the uterus.

Other Acronyms you will see in my blog:

BFN - Big Fat Negative

BFP - Big Fat Positive

Ok with some of that explained (there will be a lot more) maybe you wont be so confused!  We are able to do IUIs because you can buy donor sperm...obviously G and I don't have our own sperm. lol  And guess where you can buy it?....Yes the internet!  I am sure you are not surprised since you can pretty much buy anything on there! 

So we had discussed doing this for a long time but Summer 2010 is when we started getting serious about it.  Our relationship was great and G had moved in with me.  Since we couldn't legally get married we thought our next logical step was to start our family.  So I talked to my family doctor who I love.  She had to see a specialist to get pregnant with her twin boys and she had one patient who had a baby by donor sperm so when she gave me a referral for a fertility specialist (Dr G) I was again sure it was going to be easy!  Over the years, I have had trouble with my periods etc and had lots of tests done, but they could never find out what was wrong.  The docs told me I would probably have to see a specialist to get pregnant (that was of course before I was with a woman).  My hopes were still high thinking that all I needed was some fertility drugs and the IUI and everything would work out fine.  I figured I probably don't ovulate on my own but with the meds and the timing with the IUI I would have no trouble.  As you will soon find out that is not the case =(

So G and I talked it over and scheduled an appt with Dr G for November 2010.  She was very nice and told us what our options were, gave us information on sperm banks, and had me schedule a hysterosalpingogram (HSG).  The HSG is a special xray with dye to make sure my tubes were open.  That was scheduled for December.  G was very sick so her sister agreed to go with me.  It was raining really hard and we were late....the day just kept getting better and better.  I was sure, as we were running into the hospital getting soaked, that they would tell me I would have to reschedule.  (I tend to think negatively and I am trying to work on that!!)  But they checked me in and sent me to where I needed to go.  The nurse asked me a lot of questions and was very surprise I was there when my partner was a woman.  So I explained to her about donor sperm and IUI.  I was shocked she hadn't seen other woman like me but maybe she was new in that department! lol Anyways it was a male doctor who didn't speak good English so I suddenly got very nervous.  I had always had female doctors and Dr. G is female as well.  He explained what was going to happen...very little I was able to understand.  It wasn't awful but it was definitely painful and I got faint when the doctor had me sit up right away.  I tried to tell him but he wasn't understanding me but thank god the nurse did (the table I was on was very high and it would have been a long painful fall).  I asked the nurse what the doctor had said since I didn't understand and was feeling faint when he was telling me how it went.  She told me my tubes were clear and they didn't see any problems. 

The next thing G and I did was try to pick a sperm bank and a donor.  Man is that a task.  There are many sperm banks and then there are many donors.  We picked a sperm bank Fairfax.  Then sat down and decided what features we wanted.  I went through all the donors that met that criteria and looked through their medical history and narrowed it down from there.  It feels like you are picking the "perfect" mate.  Its weird and exciting at the same time.  I had it down to 3 so we bought their baby pics and I printed out all the information so we could really think about it.  I asked my friends and they got just as excited. lol It all was still new and exciting so it was actually fun to talk and think about.  After a few weeks we finally picked number 4034 a brown haired green eyed man with a degree in business management.  We hadn't looked at price while deciding and of course he was the most expensive because he was an ID donor (child can contact donor when 18 if he or she wishes).  But we just went with it.....we didn't want to pick a "cheap" donor! lol  His sperm would cost 900 dollars for our first IUI. Ekkk!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

First Time

Well here it goes my first blog post.  I am nervous and excited to start this process.  I worry about my writing so I apologize in advance for any mistakes!  These days with all the facebook messages, texts, and emails I don't get much practice with writing complete sentences and paragraphs.  Things have definitely changed.  I wanted to write a blog after reading other blogs that have been so helpful to me.  I discovered other people have had the same struggles as me and reading their blogs assisted me in many ways so I thought maybe if I wrote I could help someone else.  If I only help one person feel better about their situation then it's all worth it!

I have decided to begin writing this in a few different sections at first.  I have a lot of background information to get out and I think it would be very overwhelming for you and me to have it all in the first post.  So I plan on splitting up our long journey. 

A quick overview is that I am Amanda Raye so yes I am female and if you haven't guessed from part of my title ("mothers") my partner (G) is female as well.  I am not sure how public we want to be so her name will be "G" on this blog.  We have been trying to get pregnant for about 2 years.  Since we can't do it the "old fashioned way" in the 2 years we have only got to try 4 times.  We have done 4 IUIs so far.  G and I never thought it would be this hard to start our family.  When people asked us about kids when we were first together we always said "there are ways we can have kids" and didn't really think we would be struggling.  Actually we were sure our first try would work.  Which I am sure happens to all couples no matter what sexual orientation and I don't think it was wrong for us to hope for the best but we definitely were not planning for the worst.  Infertility is very hard to deal with and it took a toll on both of us individually and as a couple.  BUT I will get into all that soon!