Friday, February 19, 2016

Whew!

We are home from Colorado!

Oh, wait.  I just jumped about 16 steps ahead of you.  I’m so sorry.  I have been absolutely delinquent, and now you have no idea of anything going on with us.  When we decided to take a break this summer from treatments, I took it a little far, I guess.  Let’s go back a few months…

October
We took a long, amazing weekend and went to Estes Park, Colorado.  It was the most rejuvenating weekend.  We spent a lot of time outside and really took in the beauty of the mountains and the trumpeting elk.  Let me tell you, these elk are one majestic creature…until they trumpet.  It sounds like one of those large straws that you can swing in a circle to make it whistle.  The exact same noise.  The men make it to attract the females.  Strange.  They are everywhere, though, and it’s really a sight.  We truly love Estes Park, now!  We love it so much that we took 437 pictures in 2 days.  You think I'm kidding...

We start the trip by seeing how organized my amazing husband is.  He helped me immensely by planning the logistics of transportation and lodging for us.  He even labeled his folders.  Be still my over-organized heart.
Colorado was obviously one of God's best pieces of work.  We just fell in love with Estes Park.  I cannot wait to return.
Of the many wildlife we saw walking very closely in town, my favorites were the chipmunks and elk.
And what is vacation without some selfies?!  Honestly, we were hoping to get one good enough to frame, but can you tell it's windy?
I heart wind.
 
We ended said amazing weekend with a 9.5 hour visit to Colorado Center for Reproductive Medicine.  In infertility treatment terms, that means we went to the mecca of IVF.  This clinic is in the top 5 in the nation, y’all.  We decided that we couldn’t pass up the opportunity, so we went for the longest day of procedures, labs, classes, and meetings that we have ever had.  And let me tell you, these people are thorough!

We took an IVF orientation (that we could have taught by now) and met with our nurse, Dr. Schoolcraft, the lab CCRM uses, and the business office.  I had an ultrasound with Doppler completed, which means they were able to measure the blood flow to my uterus.  Pretty cool stuff.  I had 13 vials of blood drawn, while Todd had a measly 4. J I also had to have a hysteroscopy and HSG, both of which are very uncomfortable procedures for me.

I even took proof of my blood vials and made sure to get a picture of Todd pouting before his blood draw.
Meeting Dr. Schoolcraft for the first time was an interesting feeling.  I was so nervous to talk to him.  I must admit, he’s much more down to earth than I expected.  He took plenty of time to answer our questions, and he answered them in a way that made sense to us.

Then, we were off to meet Todd’s urologist, Dr. Cowan.  Don’t forget that name because if you or your spouse ever need an urologist, you should strongly consider flying to Colorado for this one.  Seriously, it’s been discussed.  There is something about this man.  We have met urologists before.  Four to be exact.  Number 5 was our guy, though.  Dr. Cowan is one of those guys you would like to invite over for dinner.  He has this wonderfully quirky style about him.  I actually hugged him at one point, but that’s a story for later.

And because we needed to entertain ourselves while at the doctor, more selfies.  I swear, we aren't this self-involved.  It was really funny to us.
We wrapped up the weekend by having dinner with a friend that I have known since kindergarten and her two daughters.  We had actually not seen each other since high school, but when she saw we were headed to town, she invited us out.  She’s that sweet.  It was great to catch up.  Plus, her two daughters were conceived via infertility treatments, so she just gets it.

As you can tell, our first trip to Lone Tree, Colorado, for our one-day workup (ODWU) was a success. 

I was permitted to be a part of a study at CCRM for our cycle.  In order to participate, I was required to take 3 acai supplements daily.  They sent the supplements to me, and I started them at the end of October.  This was one of the first changes to our protocol that Dr. Schoolcraft made.


November
When we left there, we were told it would take about a month for all of the test results to be complete and for Dr. Schoolcraft to call with our plan of attack.  On November 9, we set a plan to have Todd come to my office to take a conference call with me to hear what the great doctor had to say.  Unfortunately, I miscalculated the time zone differences, and Todd missed the call.  L  The short of it was that he said that if we are not ready to move on to egg donors, we should consider his Family Building Plan (FBP).  Unfortunately, the FBP could take up to a year and was out of the budget we were willing to spend at this point. 

I make that decision sound so easy, but it literally took us over a month of tears and prayers and analyzing to come to our conclusion.  We informed our nurse that we would be moving forward with a single cycle.  We had no idea what this decision would mean in the near future.

December
We received our medication protocol and saw that I would be on testosterone, Viagra, and clomid sometime throughout this cycle.  Todd said to me, “You’re going to be horny, hairy, and cranky.  That’s one heck of a trifecta!”  JJJ

On Christmas day, I started testosterone gel (which later changed to patches) and estrogen pills (called Estrace).  I fully expected to feel changes from the testosterone, but there was nothing!  On cycle day 16 (CD16 for you TTC enthusiasts), I added Prometrium tabs twice a day.  This was hands down my least favorite drug I have taken in all of my six IVF cycles.  I would rather have progesterone-in-oil shots (the ones that hurt the worst) every day for those 10 days than to have to take that medication.  It was just gross.  That’s all I will say.

I did these medications until my cycle came in January.  This was considered my “priming” month.  I have never had a priming month before.  I basically just took birth control pills before we started a cycle, so we were very excited to have so many new drugs on our protocol.  There were blood draws at the beginning and halfway through the month to make sure I was absorbing the medication.  Otherwise, it was pretty status quo.  My moods were not too terribly different.  It was a successful start to our final cycle.

I will try to write soon about the rest of the cycle.  I just don’t like having such long entries, as it is. 

Happy Weekend!

10 comments:

  1. I'm glad you're back and I can't wait to hear.

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  2. good to see an update from you. I love your selfies too :)

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    1. Thanks, friend. We do a good job of entertaining ourselves. ;-)

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  3. Oh my gosh, YAY, a full update! So excited! (And less confused, haha!)

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    1. I'm glad I can help you be less confused. That makes me happy.

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  4. Also, do they know how close they were to use BFP for their plan acronym?!

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    1. I'm not sure, but I'll ask Dr. S next time I see him. ;-)

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  5. Laura I didn't know you had acai this round. Wow, you have had a lot of different meds. Love the selfies too! Can't wait for next entry.

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    1. Yep, acai was one of the many supplements I got to take this time around. Glad you enjoyed the selfies. We enjoyed taking them. They made us giggle.

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