Monthly Archives: September 2011

What’s New?

I have been MIA lately on the blog. I keep oscillating between should I remove all the infertility obsession from my life (twitter, blogging, reading blogs, reading books on the topic, etc) to help me deal. Or is it healthy to accept and allow my obsessive ways. I think there is a happy medium between the two extremes that I need to find. So I am back… and here is a quick update on what has been going on in my life.

TODAY

I just sent back my final comments to my wedding photographer on our album proof… our TWO year Anniversary is Monday – haha! My photographer such an amazing job that I had the hardest time ever picking what photographs to use. Having the DVD of all the images didn’t help either as I could just flip through them anytime I wanted. I don’t like to think of myself as a procrastinator, but sometimes I am epic! Example 2 is the future nursery room that is essentially just a large catchall closet currently. Yes we purchased our home in the Winter of ’09 – we are coming up on three years. We talk about this room like the field of dreams… we need to clean it out and the baby will come. This thinking hasn’t yet produced action though =)

I added myself to the Stirrup Queen’s IComLeavWe (International Comment Week) October list. I’m hoping this will help me focus more on the blog – instead of just mentally outlining posts, but never writing them. More info here: http://www.stirrup-queens.com/2011/09/icomleavwe-october-2011/

It has been 3 months exactly since my endometriosis laproscopy – definitely thought I would be pregnant after three months… maybe fourth time is a charm?

THIS WEEK

Our little puppy Rosie got spayed on Tuesday (yes we got a puppy back in July – this is another whole blog entry). I joking told my husband this morning that she is like her Mommy now and can’t get pregnant! Normally she is crazy full of energy, but she is blissfully calm in her drugged up state. Sort of pathetic too in the cone head. The calmness is starting to wear off today already though, but that is good because it does not seem like she is in too much pain.

My husband went to dinner last night with his best friend, after he had noticed we were both so down on Friday night. I think that it was good for Joe to be able to talk to someone else besides me about what he is feeling. He also was able to share some of his feelings with me he hadn’t previously been able.

LAST WEEK

I officially started week 1 of the first cycle after a year of trying. I guess this technically makes me medically infertile now =(

I also found out that Charlotte, my friend who had the same endometriosis laproscopy procedure 6 days before me is pregnant. She had told me that she didn’t think she ovulated last month and was super down the last time I talked to her. So it was another one of the kick you in the gut pregnancy announcements because I had mentally put her in my safe, not pregnant box for another month. I know this should make me feel super hopeful that the surgery works. But I already knew the surgery works for a lot of people, but the reality is that everyone’s body is different. She was dealing with secondary infertility, so she already had answers to questions like, “maybe my eggs are just crappy?” My husband called at work and asked me to go somewhere private to call him and then he told me their news. I immediately just started crying. I spent probably 20 minutes on the phone with him, just sitting in front of my building at work crying. At times like that, I am sooooo tired of this journey and the reality is there could still be a very long road ahead of us. Charlotte was going to call me that night, but I had already been sort of weepy that day thanks to the Clomid and I just couldn’t handle it that day. The next day though, I mustered up my strength and happy voice and called her to wish them congrats. I realized why pregnancy announcements by close friends hurt the worst, because you would think you would be able to muster up the most happiness for those you care the most. It hurts because it feels so much like you are being left behind and excluded from a private club. It feels like a rift opens up a bit that separates the parents from the non-parents.

THIS PAST MONTH

I have added a few more layers of wellness to my get pregnant plan. I can’t stand to not change something from month to month. It just feels like Einstein’s definition of insanity… “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” So last month after I ovulated, I started acupuncture and seeing a chiropractor right after I ovulated (both of these deserve a whole post too). It didn’t result in a BFP, but I have been seeing some other great outcomes from the treatments. Maybe this month, it will all pay off?

This month, I added in removing alcohol from my diet. I am sure I will fall off the horse, but I figure reducing it 90% has to only be a benefit. We will see how I do at the wedding and all-inclusive vacation we have planned before Aunt Flo could make her dreaded appearance.

My brother got married! I wore the size 14 bridesmaid dress (ordered when I thought for sure I would be pregnant) that was “altered” back down to a size 10. It still looked huge! The wedding was so much fun and they are so happy. I have a new love of weddings currently. They are events filled with so much hope for the future – how can you not help but love them?

That pretty much covers the big stuff. Until next time!

HUGS to all, Kelly

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Peak +7 Bloodwork

I just scheduled my lab appointment for Wednesday to get my peak +7 bloodwork drawn. Last month, I never took the time to look up what exactly the doctor was testing. All I knew was that his office called with the results and told me, “the numbers are okay, but next month Dr. G would like you to raise your Clomid dosage.” It was a little discouraging to hear the doctor talk about next month when I hadn’t even had my period yet. Could he tell from my progesterone and estradiol levels seven days after ovulation that I would not be pregnant? Anyone know? I’d love to hear what you other IF ladies have come to know about these two hormones in your journeys – I hope you’ll leave comments!

Last month, I had been taking half a Clomid pill for a dosage of 25mg. This month I was instructed to take 3/4 of a pill for a dosage of 37.5mg. I have troubles with diminishing mucus and a side effect of Clomid is mucus reduction. So the doctor is trying to find the balance of just enough Clomid with the least effect to my mucus. To help the mucus, I’ve been taking 1200mg of Mucinex 2x a day and have been using Preseed lubricant.

My peak +7 numbers last cycle were:
Progesterone – 11.8 ng/ml
Estradiol – 224 pg/ml

I’ve spent a little google time checking out what functions these two hormones play since I had never even heard of Estradiol before seeing the lab order.

PROGESTERONE
(info from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Progesterone)

Progesterone is sometimes called the “hormone of pregnancy”, and it has many roles relating to the development of the fetus:
-Progesterone converts the endometrium to its secretory stage to prepare the uterus for implantation. At the same time progesterone affects the vaginal epithelium and cervical mucus, making it thick and impenetrable to sperm. If pregnancy does not occur, progesterone levels will decrease, leading, in the human, to menstruation. Normal menstrual bleeding is progesterone-withdrawal bleeding. If ovulation does not occur and the corpus luteum does not develop, levels of progesterone may be low, leading to anovulatory dysfunctional uterine bleeding.
-During implantation and gestation, progesterone appears to decrease the maternal immune response to allow for the acceptance of the pregnancy.
-Progesterone decreases contractility of the uterine smooth muscle.

In women, progesterone levels are relatively low during the preovulatory phase of the menstrual cycle, rise after ovulation, and are elevated during the luteal phase. Progesterone levels tend to be 5 ng/ml after ovulation. If pregnancy occurs, progesterone levels are initially maintained at luteal levels. With the onset of the luteal-placental shift in progesterone support of the pregnancy, levels start to rise further and may reach 100-200 ng/ml at term

ESTRADIOL
(info from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Estradiol)

In the female, estradiol acts as a growth hormone for tissue of the reproductive organs, supporting the lining of the vagina, the cervical glands, the endometrium, and the lining of the fallopian tubes. It enhances growth of the myometrium. Estradiol appears necessary to maintain oocytes in the ovary. During the menstrual cycle, estradiol produced by the growing follicle triggers, via a positive feedback system, the hypothalamic-pituitary events that lead to the luteinizing hormone surge, inducing ovulation. In the luteal phase, estradiol, in conjunction with progesterone, prepares the endometrium for implantation. During pregnancy, estradiol increases due to placental production. In baboons, blocking of estrogen production leads to pregnancy loss, suggesting estradiol has a role in the maintenance of pregnancy. Actions of estradiol are required before prior exposure of progesterone in the luteal phase.

In the normal menstrual cycle, estradiol levels measure typically <50 pg/ml at menstruation, rise with follicular development (peak: 200 pg/ml), drop briefly at ovulation, and rise again during the luteal phase for a second peak. At the end of the luteal phase, estradiol levels drop to their menstrual levels unless there is a pregnancy.
During pregnancy, estrogen levels, including estradiol, rise steadily toward term. The source of these estrogens is the placenta, which aromatizes prohormones produced in the fetal adrenal gland.

Serum estradiol measurement in women reflects primarily the activity of the ovaries.

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