Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Bad but not horrific

So a bit of an update:

I went in on Monday and had my biopsy done. That was so very fun :S I sat all day getting myself worked up about it and how much it would hurt. This is biopsy number 4, so I'm kinda getting to be a pro at it and figure that I know what to expect by now. My appointment was at 3:45.

I got to the office at 3:30 and sat and waited... and waited... and waited.... you get the picture.

It was SOOOO hot in there. Good lord, given that pregnant women are already a furnace, is it necessary to crank the heat that much? AND, the only seat available was across from the baby wall of fame. I was seated between two pregnant women and near a woman with a newborn... pure torture. Why can't offices such as this have a separate waiting area for those of us dealing with infertility.

I tried very hard to think of those women as positives... as my husband put it, they are "walking advertisements for the doctor's success". uh-huh. I figure that since in our province, the average woman doesn't see an OB/GYN for pregnancy (just goes to her GP), that anyone seeing Dr. B must be either a former infertile, or having a difficult pregnancy. I convinced myself of this to stop all the self-loathing and bits of hatred that I was feeling toward those women. I know that I shouldn't feel it, but I do - perhaps hatred is the wrong word... jealousy definitely.

So, after getting myself all worked up, sitting in a hot room, and dealing with the stress of the other clientele, I was feeling my blood pressure rising. To top it off, I took some Ponstan (Mefinamic Acid) to help with the pain. It's a painkiller that I was given years ago for cramps when no amount of Tylenol would work and we discovered my allergy to Advil. I ran out years ago - basically when I went off the pill, the cramping stopped. But, a close friend of mine has a prescription for it because she has endometriosis quite badly. She gladly gave me half a bottle. I don't like to share medication, but I made an exception at this point, knowing that I wouldn't be able to get back to my GP before going for the appointment.

So, I had taken 2 capsules before my appointment. I should mention that these also tend to increase blood pressure in most people for some reason. At 4:30, I am called in and the nurse wants to take my blood pressure. I warned her it would be bad. I told her that usually I am well within normal range, but the heat, stress, and meds have made it rise. She took it and wouldn't even tell me what it said - just said "It's not good". Then she had me lay down and put a cool cloth on my forehead and neck to help cool me down and relax. She took my blood pressure a couple minutes later and it was still high.

I should mention too that I think the very process of taking the BP is enough to make mine rise. It hurts. It has always hurt. There are times I come out of it with bruises... seriously!

The second reading was still not good, but the doctor wanted to proceed and said I should be fine.

I must say that this was the quickest that I have ever had a biopsy. She was in and out in probably 3 minutes flat. The catheter went in quickly - it hurt like hell, but it went in quick. The biopsy itself sucked a LOT. And she took two samples, so just when I thought it was done, she went back for more. I nearly passed out at that one. Then it was over. I laid there for a couple of minutes, deep breathing. Then Dr. B helped me up and said that my results would be ready in a couple of weeks and she'd call me with them.

The nurse came in a couple minutes later to make sure I was ok - and asked me again before I left. They really are very nice there.

I was expecting horrible things afterward. I have always cramped horribly for two days after each one. I was ready to take Tuesday off of work. But, after about 10 minutes, I had no cramping at all. By the time I got to Costco to do some shopping, I was done cramping.. and had none after that at all. I spotted through until this morning, but that's it.

So, I guess it wasn't as completely horrifying as I thought it would be. Don't get me wrong - the biopsy sucked! It really sucked! But at least there was no residual cramping. I just hope that's a good sign.

This may be the hardest two week wait ever! And, in the end, the worst result could be a lot more devastating than a negative pregnancy test.

Monday, 28 November 2011

I'm Blue... da-ba-di

You're welcome... to all of you who now have that song running through your head.

I've been avoiding the blogosphere. Honestly, it's tough to read about all of the people with IF blogs who are now pregnant or may be pregnant. Don't get me wrong - I'm so happy for them, and it really does help to restore some hope... but it's tough to read. When all I want is that and I can't seem to get it... it's tough. When I start reading blogs I end up in tears. When I think about writing my thoughts down, I end up in tears. When I write them (like right now), I end up in tears. It's too hard.

Most days are too hard. I've thought about just saying to hell with it all and end it. Yes, there I said it, I've thought about it. I've thought about who would care... I came up with very few people. I thought about how nothing would hurt anymore and how it would be easier than living like this. I thought about it. But I didn't do it... I'm not there yet.

That being said, I don't know what the next month will bring.

Today is my biopsy. After the painful hystereosonogram, Dr. B said she wants another biopsy. There are a few different possibilities:
1. everything comes back normal and the thick lining was just a result of months worth of non-ovulatory cycles.
2. I do have hyperplasia again, but it is the simplest, kindest kind, which won't be detrimental
3. I have the same hyperplasia as I did a year ago - and I'm left having lost a year and being right back to square one with the pre-cancer diagnosis
4. It comes back with cancerous cells present.

Naturally the first one would be the best. Part of me really does think this is the case. In the one month that I ovulated, I shed 16 mm of lining. What would happen if I ovulated every month. A normal cycle should allow me to shed all the lining that I need to... one would think. But until I am given something to make it happen, I can't be sure. Part of me wanted to take the damned clomid this month, just to see if it would fix the problem. To me that would be the simplest idea - but no, instead I get painful tests and stress of biopsies.

I honestly don't know what I'll do if it is number 4. That means a guaranteed hysterectomy and all my hopes for being a mother are gone. Adoption here is such a mess. There is no private adoption and public adoption for infants can take years. International adoption is a possibility, but it's so expensive. I don't get it... we have more than enough money to support a child, but we don't have enough to adopt one... there are thousands of kids without homes, but we can't afford to fix that for them... it's so frustrating.

I feel like such a loser and such a let down. I know that my husband loves me, but I feel like I let him down. I keep expecting him to say that he's done.. that he's going to find someone who CAN give him kids.

I'm just so sad.

And I don't want anymore painful tests.... I just don't.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Time for an Update

I've been avoiding writing this for a few days. Just not wanting to put it onto "paper" as it was - I guess.

This has been a rough week for me.

I had a good weekend last weekend - I spent all day Saturday with a really close friend. We used to spend all sorts of time together - we were each other's gym and diet pushers... and it worked great for us. Since I moved, it's been harder for us to get together. She has two girls (age 11 & 12) and both are pretty high maintenance, so it makes it hard to do much of anything. Well she called me last week to tell me that her girls and husband were going to be out of town on the weekend I should come over. So I made the trip to the big city and spent the night in her gorgeous new guest room. We went shopping, ate junk food, and stayed up until an ungodly hour watching movies. It was good therapy.

I was proud of myself for one thing. I never stand up for myself with friends. If they say something that bothers me I usually just let it go. With acquaintances or strangers or coworkers, I have no problem, but friends I usually just stew in the anger but say nothing. Well, we were talking about the option of adoption. She said that really, when she thinks back, pregnancy wasn't that good and that it's not really worth it... in the end what you want is the kid not the pregnancy. I was a bit hurt by this - she knows how hard the TTC journey has been on me. I simply said "please don't be offended by this, but you can't possibly know how hurtful that statement is to me. It's very easy for you to say that pregnancy isn't a big deal - you had yours. I've been trying for 2 1/2 years to get pregnant, so hearing that it's no big deal and not worth it is really hurtful". She apologized and said that she didn't mean it that way (which I already knew, but I'm tired of hearing it). She did say that she understood though that she can't truly get what I'm going through.

That brings me to Monday. I had the hystereosonogram on Monday. I got there a bit early and they called me in right away. The OB/Gyn was there already and raring to get going on it. They got me all set up and then the GYN informs me that her whole tub of tools was left in the car all night, so the speculum is going to be a bit cold ... but "I'll warm it under some water first". She put it in and asked if it was ok. My response "if a cold speculum was the worst you were going to do to me today, I'd be fine". She laughed. Then the pain came. It wasn't horrific. It wasn't as bad as the biopsies or HSG was. It hurt at the time - the catheter and tenaculum (sp) were particuarly bad... and she was having a problem getting the cath to stay in place.

The radiologist came in to read the pictures and he said that the cath was fine, but that since my uterus is "generous", she needed to get another vial of saline. More of the saline came out than went in - because of the angle I was laying at, it was running up my back. All sorts of fun.

The bottom line was that on CD 6 (Monday), my lining was 11 mm. Definitely better than the 27mm that it was 10 days before that, but after the hellish AF that I experienced (we're talking switching out a super-plus tampon every half hour ... and backing it up with a thick pad), I was convinced that it would be down to normal. Well, the radiologist said that he saw nothing abnormal, just thick lining.

So, the verdict is that I get to go back to the OB/GYN for a biopsy in about 10 days. She wants me near the end of my cycle so that it is thickened up again. Another fucking biopsy! Seriously - I don't know how much more of this I can take.

On the upside, I got to go shopping for a couple of new shirts... didn't really have a choice. Remember how I said that the saline was running up my back. Well, it soaked the entire back of my shirt... and that saline... well it flushed out all sorts of extras from my uterus, so my shirt wasn't just soaked in saline... it's a good thing that I was wearing black. It was a hell of a mess - there was even a giant puddle on the floor under the table. ridiculous!

Also, my friend that I saw on the weekend - she deals with really bad endometriosis and has some pills she was given for the pain. Normally I don't share medication, but I was on the same pills a few years back for the horrible cramps that I had... so I'd taken them before (lots). She said she rarely needs them now (she's in the midst of menopause), so she gave me about 30 of them. I took them before and after the hysterosonogram, and that might have helped a bit.

Anyway, that's my update. The OB/GYN is pretty sure that the hyperplasia is back. My best hope is that it's simple and typical, not the complex with atypia as I had before. She sounds like she wants to possibly perform another D&C if it is... which I'm fine with... so we'll see.

You know, I was desperately hoping that I would pregnancy news to share with the family at Christmas - now I'm desperately hoping that I don't have cancer...

Sometimes life fucking sucks!

Friday, 11 November 2011

Decisions, decisions

Yesterday and today have been painful to say the least. It's reminding me of the way that I was feeling a year ago when the hyperplasia was in full swing. I will warn you now that some of the next couple of paragraphs may fall under the "too much information" category... read at your own risk.

By yesterday morning, my flow was very heavy. I had a great day of walking gingerly down to the washroom every hour or so as I felt a large clot trying to pass. I learned the hard way last year that if I move too fast at this point, I better have a change of clothes handy. So yesterday I was in a great amount of pain... LOTS of heavy cramping to accompany the heavy flow and large clots. I was up every 20 minutes last night for a few hours because of it. So frustrating.

Today was pretty bad this morning. Basically we're talking a flow that is heavy enough to fill a super-plus tampon and a backup heavy flow (overnight) pad in about an hour. That may sound bad, but given that last year at this time, I was having to change out every 20 minutes... 1-2 hours doesn't sound too bad. By this afternoon the cramps had subsided, so that's good. I even got a bit of a nap. The worst was that I couldn't find my hot water bottle, so at a point when heat would have really helped, I had none. My cat must have sensed that I needed help, because he climbed under the blankets and wiggled his way onto my stomach where he laid and purred the whole naptime.

So, right now, I'm not doing too badly in that area. The cramping is gone and I think that the flow is starting to lighten up a bit... I hope.

Tomorrow I"m off to spend the rest of the weekend with one of my closest friends who I haven't seen in nearly two months. Her husband and kids are going away for the weekend, so we're doing a girls' night.

Emotionally I'm doing a bit better. Still freaking out about the hysterosonogram, but I guess if I could get through the biopsies and HSG, I can survive this one too. Of course I'll survive, it's all in how much pain I'll have. I'm a total wimp. Of course women go through worse pain everyday, but for me, this completely sucks! I keep hearing, well it could be worse, or childbirth is worse, etc... but you know what.... for me this is shitty! I don't care how much worse it could be, the fact is that I'm going through this now. Right now, this is the worst that it could be. Right now, I have to deal with THIS! And it's not fair. It's not fair at all! Yes, I'm pouting a bit over all of this.

I think that hubby and I came to a decision today... no, not think, I know we did. After a lot of talking and soul-searching, we sent an email to the provincial adoption organization to find out what the first steps are to get our names on the list for a domestic adoption. We'd be willing to do international, but we're a bit financially disadvantaged to do that. Don't get me wrong... we are financially stable and can easily afford to raise a child or three, but to afford the costs of an international adoption? Not for a few more years. In the meantime, we can get all the paperwork and interviews, etc done for domestic adoption, and maybe, just maybe, a teenager gets knocked up and chooses us for her baby's parents. The bonus... there is no cost other than things like medical paperwork, criminal record checks, etc. I figured out the approximate costs for us, and it should be less than $200 to complete all of that.

So I sent the email and we'll see what the next steps are. Until today I honestly never felt really ready to take this step... I'm rather at peace with it now.

This whole medical issue resurfacing has really made me evaluate what I want... and while I desperately want to be pregnant, I want to be a parent more.

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

An Insult, an injury, and a slap in the face!

So, I woke up this morning and had a low temp (36.09) which is not a good thing. I figured after yesterday's cramping, this was not going to be a good day. I was right!

Before I could take the HPT, I discovered that AF showed up during the night. So yeah, not pregnant. That was bad enough.

This morning, I snuck out of my class to make a call to the OB/GYN to arrange my next follicle tracking ultrasound. They were supposed to call me back with a date/time, so when the call came in, I wasn't concerned. I should have been.

On the line wasn't my OB/GYN's receptionist... it was the OB/GYN, Dr. B.

Dr. B said that she called because she had just gotten the ultrasound back from my post-ovulation ultrasound. She said that there seemed to be some problem with the lining. It was way too thick and she wanted to know if I ever got a follow-up biopsy since the one that I got back in May. I told her I hadn't, since Dr. A (the oncologist) told me to call him for one in November. She said that the results from the ultrasound showed thickened lining and irregularities. And she said that she recently got the results of the HSG in which the radiologist apparently stated that there were irregularlities in the lining. They thought that these might be post-operative changes after the D&C, but there was also discussion of them being polyps.

So Dr. B gave me the bad news... she needs to do ANOTHER test. I am scheduled for a hysterosonogram on Monday morning. Apparently this procedure involves a catheter being inserted into the cervix, through which she inserts saline solution to expand the uterus. Then they do a trans-vaginal ultrasound to determine any abnormalities in the uterine lining/wall.

Following that, Dr. B said she may want to do another biopsy. And if there are polyps, then I will need surgery to remove them. Of course, they might come back precancerous, or cancerous. If they are cancerous, then the only option is a hysterectomy. I'm so not ready for that.

I was hoping that at Christmas, I would be able to announce to the family that we would be adding to it. Now, it seems that there is a possibility that I might be recovering from a hysterectomy and dealing with the emotional side-effects of that. I really don't know if I can handle that.

I'm really struggling with all of this...

I don't know if I can handle the pain of anything else. Every test seems to be more and more painful. I nearly passed out at the HSG, and was in shock afterward. I don't know if I can handle the pain of another test. I'm sure that I can't handle another biopsy. I know that I won't be able to handle a hysterectomy... I might end up in a psych ward for that one... no joke.

I broke down twice in classes today. During my grade 5 English class I ran out of the room and into the bathroom where I sat for 5 minutes hyperventilating and bawling. Along the way I ran into one of my colleagues and later I went to apologize for my emotional state. She said something that complete triggered the tears again, and then she gave me a big hug and just sat there and listened while I cried and spilled my guts. It was kinda nice to get it off my chest to someone there... She is having her own issues with fertility and while she's not trying to conceive, she shared some concerns she has about when she does want to conceive in a few years.

I cried most of the way home, and I really feel empty today. I have nasty cramps like I haven't had in years - and since I now have a wonderful allergy to ibuprofin, nothing seems to help them. It's a nice reminder of all the crap that I have to look forward to.

How the hell am I going to get through all of this??

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Optimism? yeah, it just left with Elvis.

I'm thinking that this cycle may be a bust. All day I've been having a weird, full cramping feeling in my uterus. Sure, it could be pregnancy, but it's likelier that it's AF showing up. I discovered something very strange today too - EWCM. Never had that in the second half of my cycle before... but then again, I'm not sure I've ever had an ovulatory cycle since jr. high. So who knows what that means. All my research has told me that it could be a sign of early pregnancy as the body starts to form the mucous plug, or it could be a sign that AF is about to show up...

Why are so many early pregnancy signs also a sign of AF? It's ridiculous and not fair. I wish I could be that person who just happened to get pregnant and figured out I was because, oops, I hadn't had a period in over 8 weeks. I can't imagine not realising that I missed a period. But I know that the IF has made me hypersensitive to everything that happens in my body, particularly in the reproductive area.

Anyway, I'll do another HPT tomorrow and hopefully get a BFP, but I"m not counting on it. Tomorrow will be 14 DPO, so I'm thinking if it isn't ++ tomorrow, it's probably not going to be.

My fingers are very lightly crossed... my optimism has pretty much left the building.

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Okay, I caved

I took an HPT today. I couldn't wait any longer. I am only 11 DPO, but with three days of consistently higher than high temps, and what looks like a triphasic chart to me, I had to do it.

The results: BFN

But I'm not concerned. I get that I'm only 11 DPO and the chances of it showing a positive this early is limited. The good thing is that at least I know that the HCG trigger is out of my system so any BFP that I might get in a few days is the real thing.

So, now I just have to sit back and not hyperfocus on the pregnancy thing for the next three days while I wait to test again.

I plan to test again on 14 DPO - which will be Wednesday. Hopefully that will give me some positive news!

On a completely unrelated note - woke up in a Winter Wonderland this morning - snow everywhere - it apparently snowed all night. I hate winter so much! Sure, it's pretty, but it's cold, wet, and makes driving hell! I honestly wish that we got snow on Christmas Eve and it went away on Boxing Day... but at least it waiting until November this time. That's something to be thankful for. So tomorrow will be an interesting trip to work - we never know what the highway will look like in the winter - if it doesn't snow more tonight, we'll hopefully be ok for driving... I hate winter!

Friday, 4 November 2011

Psychosomatic? Let's hope not...

So on Wednesday, around mid-afternoon I started to have a weird, almost warm, feeling in my stomach. Not my uterus, but my stomach. It was slightly nauseating, but nothing that made me run for a washroom. Yesterday, around 11:00, I had a wave of nausea flood over me. Again, nothing major, just that feeling of needing to evaluate whether I needed to be in a washroom or would it be fine. It went away as quickly as it came, and reappeared about five minutes later. I bought a puff-wheat cake at the school canteen and ate it slowly and I felt much better.

As much as I don't want to be hit with morning sickness, I would be fine if this was a result of pregnancy, and if this is as bad as it gets. I realise if it is sickness that it will get worse, but I really hope it's a sign of pregnancy. fingers crossed

Then, this morning, I woke up and took my BBT. I've been watching it like a hawk this cycle - hoping it is normal. It's been above the coverline for the entire time past ovulation. Today is 9 DPO. This morning's temp jumped about .2 degrees celcius from where it has been... 36.67. That's SOOO high for me. The highest temp I've had in the past 7 months of temping has been only 36.6. So, naturally I hope that it's the start of a triphasic chart happening.

There is just so much maybe with all of this that it's starting to make me mental. Every time I tell my husband what's going on, he thinks it's funny that the female body is so confusing. He told me yesterday that with everything that I've told him, he can't help but be excited that this time it's working.

I'm cautiously optimistic...

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Is it? Is it not?

All day I've had tight, full, crampy feelings in my uterus area. In one specific spot there have been little shooting pains - always in the same spot. It doesn't really hurt much. It is pretty mild compared to what I've gone through in the past. In fact, I have a toe that is hurting more because I stepped on something sharp last night. But that doesn't stop the fact that it's still there.

I am really hoping that this is the start of something good. The way I figure it, it could be one of two things:

1. Implantation
2. A short luteal phase and the precursor to AF

I'm really hoping for the first one as you can imagine! I was reading another blog out where the writer stated that they had this type of feeling starting about a week before their BFP. I'm at 6dpo, so I'm hoping that's what's going on here.

I really don't know how I'm going to deal with it if I get a BFN this cycle. It's been so long and we've already been through so much. At this point, everything is set up perfectly and it's all on nature... I just hope Mother Nature has stopped hating me so much! Hubby and I had a conversation tonight about what he is to do if I do get a BFN. He's convinced that even if it's negative, it's still a good sign, because it made everything except pregnancy happen. He's right, of course, but I told him that that's not what I am going to want to hear. Even though I will know that it's true intellectually, emotionally I just want him to hug me while I cry it out. Luckily he is amazing and said "ok, you want me to sit there and just shut the f--- up ... I can do that".

Hopefully we won't have to deal with that, but at least if we do, we've laid the groundwork for the communication and support side of it.

Weird Coverlines

I've been using Taking Charge of Your Fertility primarily to chart my BBT. I have been charting using that since January and never had a normal looking cycle until now. Go figure! Apparently when you don't ovulate, you don't have a normal cycle... who knew haha.

So, this month, with the Clomid, my cycle actually looks mostly normal. The pre-fertile part of my cycle jumps around a lot, but once I hit the fertile part of my cycle, it looks completely normal, and when that part was done it did a jump after ovulation and has stayed there for the past 6 days.

What was very strange was that my coverline in TCOYF was set at 36.53. This seemed odd for me. It seemed really high! My average temps are usually around 36.2, sometimes dropping as low as 35.6. Seriously, that low! I looked it up and if you have temps below 36.1, you are borderline hypothermic. Should I be worried... probably not.

However, with my temps typically this low, having a coverline that is so high is weird. The highest temp that I've tracked in the past 10 months has only been 36.6, so setting the coverline nearly that high seems odd.

A friend suggested that I try out fertilityfriend to see if it agreed. So I last night, I put my temps from this cycle into the fertilityfriend website. It came back saying that I definitely ovulated (something that TCOYF won't do) and that my coverline is 36.3. That seems more normal.

So, then this morning, TCOYF dropped my coverline to 36.42 - better, but still not great.

But, based on fertilityfriend, I have six temps above the coverline now and I am 6dpo. Now to just be patient for another 8 days.

Oh, it's going to be a long wait.