Wednesday, June 25, 2008

No Clear Answers

Yesterday, when I started the blood test/US route early, it was unclear if I had already gotten my period, though it was clear that my betahCG was zero, not pregnant. Yesterday it was also unclear if I would be able to start the injection regimen this month, because I had already started the follicular stage, and my uterus was juicy.

26/6/08: 11th year anniversary of moving to Israel. Blood tests and ultrasound show increased follicular development and an even juicier uterus. The nurse asked me if I had started real bleeding for a period, I have not, and so we are all unclear on the path this month will take. I still find myself wondering if I should take a break for a month, for sanity's sake.

28/6/08: Mystery solved, a "real" period started this morning. I will go to Hadassah tomorrow and ask if I should now be monitored along the regular procedure, and if they will want me to start injecting myself with hormones on Day 5.

29/6/08: Blood tests and ultrasound at Hadassah Hospital, my body is back on track according to the results. Yelena and her husband tell me that they are pregnant, I couldn't be happier for them.

2/7/08: Blood tests and ultrasound, specifically to determine if I should start taking hormones this evening. And if I cannot, I have been told to continue the natural route, because I don't want to "miss a month." Or at least they don't want me to miss a month "at my age."

3/7/08: Started injecting myself last night, a relatively low dose of 75 cc of hormones. This dosage stands for four days, until my next set of blood tests.

6/7/08: Blood tests and ultrasound, follicles are growing nicely apparently, but I don't know yet if I will have to increase the dosage of the hormones.

8/7/08: Blood tests and ultrasound, Ovitrelle in the afternoon, IUI tomorrow.

Graduation to the Next Level

Three tries, and three times that I became pregnant but did not remain so, like 95% of "natural miscarriages" that occur with women in nature. I met with the doctor today at Hadassah Hospital, and we came up with a new plan, one that involves more aggressive hormones.

When I asked him about his theory as to why the pregnancy is not sticking, he said, "Better not to speculate." That was right before he reminded me that I am turning 40 in less than a month, and I started crying.

Quite frankly, yesterday when I started spotting - despite using Progesterone to lengthen my cycle - I was ready not only to give up on becoming pregnant, but also ready to leave Israel. After 11 years of living here, and almost 40 years old, I never imagined that I would be quite so alone. What makes it worse is that many of my friends who claimed they would "be there" and support me when things got tough, they have all started avoiding me, not returning my phone calls.

Apparently my choice makes them uncomfortable, and it is unfortunate that they cannot get past it and help me. I must get used to this idea, because at the end of the day, I will be getting up at four in the morning to breast feed, I will be taking my child to nursery. It is my life that will change.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Thinking Positive

Even as I was getting my period, there were well-meaning people telling me to "think positive," that if I thought I was pregnant, I would be pregnant. Biology does not work that way, and as much credit as I give to the power of my mind, I was going to get my period.

Not giving up on the traditional medical fertility route, I have added in the guidance of a Chinese homeopath, who agrees with me that my primary issue is a shortened Luteal cycle; my Progesterone levels run out before the fertilized egg can implant.

Now I take folic acid, and herbs, and hopefully together it will give me the edge I need to keep this next pregnancy. I don't want to go into a round of hyper-hormones.

6/5/08: Blood tests and Ultrasound at Hadassah Hospital, on day 7 of this cycle. I have two "good looking" follicles on the right side.
8/5/08: Blood tests and Ultrasound at Hadassah Hospital, some lousy service because the Jewish holiday of Shavuot starts tonight, and thus they are understaffed.
10/5/08: Blood tests and Ultrasound, the technician arrives an hour late and the waiting list grows to 35 women. I get the OK for IUI tomorrow, and don't need to inject myself tonight, as I seem to have had "spontaneous ovulation."
During this cycle, after the IUI, I will be taking natural Progesterone ("Ultrogestan") in order to extend my Luteal phase, and hopefully allow for successful implantation.