Friday, March 24, 2006
Happy spring and stuff…
Long time, no post. Things have been relatively quite around our house. The liquor is flowing again, our evenings out are lasting later and later into the night, and the talks of a much-needed vacation are becoming increasingly serious.

Our regroup with the embryologist and the RE has been rescheduled due to work conflicts and we now have to wait until April 7th. I am actually okay with the extra week and a half wait because I still need some time to formulate questions and think through the reality of what has happened. We are still undecided on what our next path is going to be and I am not sure that what they have to say is going to help us make up our minds.

In happy news one of Husband and my closest friends recently found out that they are pregnant with their first. They had a hard time getting pregnant and were starting to look at other avenues. I am glad that things worked out for them and I know that MuddsDaddy is going to be an AWESOME pappa!

Oh yeah - can you believe that Mother of None had its first birthday? And I missed it? Bah!

Wednesday, March 08, 2006
Clarification. . .
Thank you again for all of your kind comments and emails. My situation seems to have elicited a bunch of questions and I feel like I should take a minute to answer some of them. Keep in mind that our problem seems to be a failure to mature not a failure to fertilize. I do not think I was clear about that in my previous post.

1. Why no ICSI?
ICSI was not performed because the eggs that were retrieved were not mature at retrieval and did not mature enough over the weekend for fertilization.

Before an ovum can be fertilized it must undergo a process of maturation or ripening. This takes place previous to or immediately after its escape from the follicle, and consists essentially of an unequal subdivision of the ovum (Fig. 4) first into two and then into four cells. Three of the four cells are small, incapable of further development, and are termed polar bodies or polocytes, while the fourth is large, and constitutes the mature ovum.

ICSI will not work if you are dealing with immature eggs.

The embryologist is still confident that HAD my eggs been mature Husbands swimmers would have been able to do it on their own.

2. Why the pessimistic response from my RE?
The condition (average to high retreival number and ZERO maturation) is not seen that frequently especially in someone my age with absolutely no other apparent issues. I would say that the doctors are being realistic and not pessimistic. I actually appreciate that they are not playing games with us. They truly and honestly do not know whether the condition is permanent, but if it is there is really no way to fix it.

3. Why a diagnostic IVF cycle?
The doctors are not willing to confirm their hypothesis based on one failed cycle. 'Diagnostic' is the term that I am using to help keep it real. IF we decide to go through another IFV it will be for diagnostic purposes. However, IF the doctors hypothesis is wrong and my eggs are able to mature and subsequently fertilize then by all means we will put two back!

4. What next?
We have a re-group with the RE and the Embryologist on the 28th. The RE is not sure what he would do differently if we did another cycle. This cycle he actually pushed me one day further than he ordinarily would with the hopes that a couple of the smaller follicles I had at my Wednesday ultrasound would be ready by Saturday. He is going to do some research and hopes to be able to present us with at least one option at our meeting. He is considering increasing my HCG trigger to try to force the eggs into the final stages of maturation and he is considering taking me longer (higher E2 levels and bigger follicles) than he would ordinarily.

Does that help explain it?

Monday, March 06, 2006
The explanation...
We don't know much yet, but here is what we do know:

- in 99.9 % of cases where they retrieve multiple eggs that appear mature at the time of retrival at least some of the eggs will reach final maturation within 24 hours.
- I seem to have eggs that fall in the .1%
- My eggs can not seem to get to the polar body stage:

Image taken from Visembryo - go give them some love!

- My clinic only sees this condition about once every 24 months
- The condition appears to be permanent
- The embryologist can not confirm that the condition is permanent unless we go through another IVF cycle
- I do not know if I can handle a 'diagnostic' IVF cycle
- If the condition is permanent chances are the only way I will be able to get pregnant if we use donor eggs
- We both agree that using donor eggs is not for us

We will have a meeting sometime in the next week or so with the RE and the embryologist and they will try to break it down for us a little bit more.

So here we are standing at a crossroads again. I don't know what our next move will be but I know that we will not be making any rash decisions. I did, however, go to test drive the new car that I want. Of course we can really only afford it if we take the DINK (dual-income-no-kids) option.

Sunday, March 05, 2006
What we have here is...
failure to fertilize.  Yes folks we are cancelled. The score was 11-0 and we were on the losing team.  Seems my eggs, although they looked perfect yesterday after retrieval, were not as mature as they seemed to be.  The embryologist delivered the news at 6:45 this morning.  He is going to monitor for progress until 3:00 MST and then he will call it.

I do not know what our next step in this journey is, but I am glad that I have all of you here with me.

Saturday, March 04, 2006
A left-handed dozen...
This is the name that Husband gave to our eleven beautiful little eggs retrieved this morning. Things went smoothly and I am at home relaxing and taking it easy. We will get a fertilization report bright and early tomorrow morning. Until then I leave you with a picture of the cute socks I purchased out to wear to retrieval this morning!

Thursday, March 02, 2006
Trigger happy...
I received a phone call from one of the nurses today with my instructions.  I triggered at 7:00 pm and am to arrive for retrieval at 6:30 am on Saturday morning.  Husband, being the morning person that he is, is not pleased.  The good news about retrieval on Saturday is that my favorite nurse is working this weekend and due to the early hour of our appointment I will have almost two full days to recover before I go back to work.  The bad news is that my doctor is NOT working this weekend and I will have to see Dr. Cute and Old.  I actually really like Dr. Cute and Old, I have seen him around the office and he always greets me with a smile and a friendly hello.

The trigger tonight went well even though I was a bit nervous that I was going to jack it up.  Today s ultrasound showed about 14 follicles, 10 on the left and four on the right.  I am not counting on any particular number at retrieval but secretly hope that it is bigger than ten.  Hopefully I will not be let down.  

Wednesday, March 01, 2006
I have three visits with the Wand Monkey and three blood draws under my belt. It seems that my right side is cranking out the follicles and the left side is asleep. On Sunday my E2 was around 400 and yesterday it was over 1400. They are monitoring me closely since my number jumped so much and since I have one follie leading the pack on the right side. They told me to expect retrieval this weekend, but not to be surprised if it happened on Friday. So far they have not reduced the amount of Men0pur or Bra velle that I am shooting up but I kind of expect that to change today. Today s ultrasound showed 10 measurable follicles, 8 on the right and two on the left. They range in size from 9mm to 18mm with most in the 12-14mm range and my lining looks good at 12.4mm.

I have officially outgrown most of my clothes. Although I can still technically button my pants they bloat underneath is so. not. attractive! There have already been rumors flying around my office that am knocked - swear I will bitch slap the first person with the balls to ask! Yesterday I had a hormone induced mental breakdown at lunch and had to go and buy a shirt (or two) to hide the bloat. Luckily I work in the downtown district of a major metropolitan city and there is plenty of good shopping within walking distance!

Updated to add pictures and mention that today's E2 was over 1800!

Here are the two that I bought:

Here is the one that I want:

I have never worn a shirt with an empire waist in my life and therefore my coworker advised that I not purchase this until I am ready to discuss the growing belly.