With a Clearer Mind

Adios insomnia and stomach acid. It’s amazing what a (temporary) drop in my prednisone dosage, as well as some Ambien and Zantac can do for a girl.

Right now I am in a waiting period.

On CD3, my estrogen was 237, when it should be below 50. WTF? My doctor believes my body is “metabolizing estradiol slowly post-FET.” Hey, ya think? I have the option to take Provera, but I think prefer to let my body get back to “normal” on it’s own before we try another FET.

And of course now we have to start to plan around holiday lab closures.

I’ve also been in communication with Dr. Braverman’s financial team, as I have an interest in his embryologist (who is supposed to be brilliant with MFI) and a possible hail mary egg retrieval with his practice. However the costs are looking to be fairly prohibitive. Dr. Braverman’s policy is that you must pay out of pocket for things that my insurance will cover due to MFI, like ICSI and CCS biopsies. Nonetheless, it may be worth a trip to Long Island to talk it out.

I think the way forward is a more natural FET and if that fails I will consider another egg retrieval. My RE and I discussed this plan and he told me I was a “tough cookie.” I told him I just had perspective and didn’t think whining and crying was going to get me a baby. But that is the subject for another post.

The Side Effects of Prednisone

images-4There were many alternative titles for this post, including “Crisis Management,” “Zantac Candy,” and “Zombie Girl” or last but not least, “The Wheels are Coming Off.” Nonetheless, I settled with the least witty one out there. I’m tired.

I’ve been struggling with some heavy side effects from Prednisone. Right now I am dealing with significant insomnia (zombie girl), painful acid reflux/stomach issues (zantac candy), and numbness in my fingers. More infrequently, I also have had hot flashes and a rapid heart rate. Incidentally, the one side effect that I have not been blessed with is increased hunger and weight gain.

Yesterday my doctor and I spent 20 minutes (crisis management) plotting ways to combat some of these side effects so I can return to my regular, rational self (the wheels ARE coming off). I was relieved he took my worries to heart. In fact, he said “You have never once complained to me, so I can tell when you are serious.”

Look at that, I am not the girl who cried wolf.

My next FET is on hold for a few weeks. My estrogen is still significantly elevated (at 237) and therefore my body is holding on to an 8.1 lining (a transfer quality lining, not a baseline lining). My body is completely out of whack and my cycle is all off. Just another reason to say a medicated FET is not or me.

My options are to wait it out for a natural bleed or take Provera. Then I can either move into another FET or start Lupron in the luteal phase and roll directly into another egg retrieval.

I will be the first to admit that I am currently not in the right headspace to make any important decisions. I have 3 normals on ice, but feed me a failed FET (after years of just trying to get embryos) coupled with very little sleep (zombie girl) and I keep returning to “must. hoard. more. embryos.” I promised myself and my husband that there would be no more egg retrievals come 2015. There has to be an end point to all this madness. But then again, we thought our issue was getting embryos, not implantation.

What I Ate Thursday

BreakfestThe continuing and riveting review of what I eat on an anti-inflammatory diet. Today I got a late start, so my first meal was a big one, and then I had a snacky lunch:

Brunch
4 Egg white omelet (cooked in olive oil) w/ spinach and 1oz smoked salmon
2 Pieces Udi’s GF bread with Earth Balance GF/DF butter
Half-caff espresso with 2T half and half (complete fail here)

Lunch:
Cubed pineapple
That’s It Apple + Strawberry fruit bar
Guacamole and GF blue corn tortilla chips

Dinner:
Pan Roasted Salmon with Sweet Corn and Fava Bean w/ Fresh Dill Sauté and Braised Beluga Lentils (jury is still out as to whether I will skip the corn in this meal)

Snack:
Whole Foods Cape Cod nut mix (almonds, cashews, and dried cranberries)

Newsflash: Life is Unfair.

I have debated posting this, but after some thought, I think there are some important lessons to learn here, so while this is now live to my readers, I am not posting for pity and the comments on this post have been turned off. Life is unfair, and one thing I am not, is a whiner.  There are worse things to suffer from than this, and I remind myself of that often.

Recently, we transferred a hatching, CCS normal embryo and the cycle resulted in no pregnancy.   There was a significant immune protocol in place and my lining was at 11 and it was triple-striped.   I did acupuncture and followed an anti-inflammatory diet too. The lesson:  even the most perfect of circumstances can result in a BFN.  Another lesson: Just because you have a chromosomally normal embryo doesn’t mean you are guaranteed a BFP.

I had a lot of symptoms leading up to my BFN, all of which can be contributed to the medications, especially the progesterone. That’s another good lesson:  those symptoms? They are from the medications.

My next FET is already scheduled and we will be following a more natural FET protocol vs. what we did recently, a more medicated FET. If this cycle results in another BFN, I will immediately start IVF#9 and do another retrieval.