3907272279_b3dd74bb20_zHey lovelies,

IVF cycle one is in full effect! It’s been a busy week of stimulating drugs over here at the MacDonald household. I had my ultrasound and blood work to see how everything is going. Here is the run down of this month so far…

Cd-1: Baseline ultrasound and blood work and period– freaking period. Never can count on her to show when you want her to. You want to be pregnant? BAM comes right on time. You want to bleed so you can start IVF meds? Of COURSE that’s the month you are late. Finally, started my period and got my baseline reading done. I was still in the shedding phase (gag) and so I started stimulation needles (stims) on day 4 instead of day 3 of my cycle.

CD4/Day 1 stims: Started taking Gonal F-225 and Luveris-75. It didn’t really hurt or bruise or bleed. No side effects yet. YAY. Mostly just crazy nerves over actually starting.

Day 2 stims: Gonal-225 and Luveris-75. Still not tender and no bruising but got a LOT of sharp stabby pains on my ovaries this evening. Something is obviously happening.

Day 3 stims: Gonal-225 Luveris-75. Not as lucky with the shots this day, the needles hurt and the meds burned going in. I was having some exhaustion coupled with insomnia, which made for super fun times. This led me to totally freak out in the evening and have a full on panic attack. Long story short, I was convinced that I was going to die from the stim drugs, yeah, panic attacks are fun. Managed to calm myself back down and finally get to sleep.

Day 4 stims: Gonal-225 Luveris-75. Needles were still more sensitive and meds burned again… not sure why.  A little tired and a little achy in my abdomen but not too bad. I could still do up my jeans, but I preferred not to. 😉 Starting to feel pretty weepy now, had a few moments where I overreacted and got so sad that I ugly cried. Like sobbing, with sup-sups… Yeah, hormones were kicking in lol.

Day 5 stims: First ultrasound and blood work while stimulating–Only 7 follicles growing. DIS-A-POINTED! To put it another way, they would like to see 12-15 in most people, and if you have 5 or less they will cancel your cycle. It didn’t look likely that we’ll get any more either because they couldn’t see any teeny tiny pin prick ones on the ultrasound. It looked like whatever was available was growing nicely. I had two follicles on my right at 0.9 and 0.9. and five on my left at 0.95, 0.95, 0.8, with two trailing smaller. So, if nothing else, at least they are all around the same size and that’s good. My lining was 0.75. My E2(estrogen)  came back at 400 (Canadian) and so they decided to up my meds a bit in hopes of finding any follicles that may be hiding. New meds set as Gonal-300 and Luveris-75 to keep stimulating the eggs to grow and this day I added in Cetrotide-0.25 to prevent ovulation.

Day 6 stims: Gonal F-300 Luveris-75 Cetrotide-0.25… Was my second day of Cetrotide. Feeling pretty good. I’m finally getting used to the needles. I got home from acupuncture with 5 min to go until the shots had to happen. I got everything organized and done on time. I was proud of myself for sure! I wanted to give myself the best possibilities for my next scan (day 7) so I ate lots of protein, drank more water than I have been, heated my abdomen and did acupuncture. I had developed a few small bruises at this point… about 5 small ones. Feeling a little sore but nothing horrible.

Day 7 stims: That’s today! Ultrasound and blood work to check how I am responding to the medicine and how my follicles are developing. This monitoring, ultrasound and blood work, will continue every two days until it is time to harvest the eggs. Today I had two new follicles developing so a grand total of 9 follicles. Three on the right measuring 1.4, 1.1, 0.7 and six on my left measuring 1.7, 1.4, 1.2, 0.7, and two smaller ones that weren’t big enough to measure. I’m glad that I got two new ones as it makes it less likely that they will cancel my cycle but I know that they still have a long way to grow in order to catch up. My lining is looking great at 0.85. I don’t have my E2 levels yet but I’m sure they are still in the normal range. They are going to keep me on the same dose of meds going forward. So Gonal F-300 Luveris-75 and Cetrotide-0.25. Next ultrasound on Sat. Still some growing time left in these puppies.

So, in review, the first week was pretty good. Not as horrible doing the shots as I was expecting. Emotionally it has been interesting. I’m dealing with more anxiety than I thought I would. Every step feels like holding your breath. I’m keeping it in check with meditation, tea with friends, colouring and therapy. So far things are ok. I wish I was responding stronger to the drugs, especially because I am on such a high dose, but with DOR we already knew this was a possibility. I’m glad to be getting close to ten follicles. Not every follicle will contain a usable egg, but I’m feeling ok about our numbers so far. There is a quote from another infertility blog, With Great Expectation, that I want to share with you because it’s the only thing I’ve read about this process that makes sense. This really hit me in the heart and I felt understood:

” Just know that, from the beginning of this process all the way to the end, you will not feel like yourself in any way, shape, or form. For starters, you will feel out of whack physically. You will feel tired on some days, edgy and antsy on others, achy, bloated and fat… [the list could go on.]

And while it’s true that if you’ve been trudging through infertility, you’ve probably already felt emotional and overwhelmed, the emotions that accompany IVF are totally unique. The day you start your IVF cycle, something changes. For me, the emotions I experienced with IVF were far different even from the emotions I experienced with each of our three IUIs, and vastly different from my more natural cycles when we were trying to conceive. They are truly indescribable, and nearly impossible to prepare for.

You will be distracted, and focused constantly on your IVF cycle. You will loose your water bottle, your cell phone, your car keys, your purse, and your temper. You will forget things that used to seem commonplace. In short, you will feel like you are losing your mind.

So give yourself grace during this time.”

I mean, right?!  Thank you, Logan! This gives me such comfort. It lets me know I’m not alone. I highly recommend you get to know the rest of her website. Also the rest of her post on IVF is something I think anyone going through this or wondering about the process should read.

As for my cycle, onward! I’ll keep you posted.

Unpregnant Chicken

*IVF Cycle next post on egg collection here*

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19 thoughts on “IVF Cycle: Week One Update

  • March 19, 2015 at 9:26 am
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    Yeay for more follicles!! Seems like I went ahead without you, oops 🙂 I’m on day 8 of stims, E2 is 4500 and have 10 follicles between 1.1 and 2.0, although we think only 6 might be mature enough at retrieval. I have mine on Sunday!!! It’s awesome your follicles are so close together in size, that’s good news, and the E2 can jump so much from one day to another one.

    I am right there with you with the craziness and the crying. I think I have it “under control” so I “only” cry every other day now LOL The craziness is daily though. I am having close to your exact same meds, 300 of Gonal F, 75 of Bravelle (up to 150 today), and 25 of Cetrotide. Hopefully it will be the perfect combo for both of us.

    You are doing great! This will be THE cycle, we can do this!

    Reply
    • March 19, 2015 at 9:33 am
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      Amanda,
      I think it’s because my period was tardy! lol. You’re retrieval is so soon! I’m thinking all be where you are on day 9… Sat then trigger… retrieval is look most likely next Monday or Tuesday. I think of my 9 follies well probably get 6 or 7 eggs. But hard to say at this point. Fingers crossed for us both! Best of luck!
      XOXXO, Unpregnant Chicken

      Reply
  • March 19, 2015 at 9:44 am
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    Glad to hear you are keeping some sanity in this crazy process. You’re doing some great things to stay as grounded as you can. I really love acupuncture, what are your thoughts on it so far? I think for me the benefit is mainly “forced meditation.” Something I would not be able to do as well at home.

    Thinking of you and rooting for you!

    pcosandpizza

    Reply
    • March 19, 2015 at 10:27 am
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      Nicole,
      Hey, yeah I’m not doing so bad! I am LOVING acupuncture. I find its relaxing and made a HUGE difference to my cycles. Now I’m hopeful that it’s going to support this cycle and get us a baby! Hahah. Hoping you are well too.
      XOXXO, Unpregnant Chicken

      Reply
    • March 19, 2015 at 2:40 pm
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      Baby, Are you coming?
      Thanks! FX they are all around the same size and ready to go!
      XOXXO, Unpregnant Chicken

      Reply
  • March 19, 2015 at 10:48 am
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    So happy to read this update. More follies is fantastic! They still have lots of growing time. Your post is clear and easy to understand, so congratulations – you haven’t lost your mind from going through this craziness! Feeling positive about your next update 🙂

    Reply
    • March 19, 2015 at 2:40 pm
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      Renuka,
      Yup, they are little guys for now but they may grow. GROW FOLLIES GROW.
      XOXXO, Unpregnant Chicken

      Reply
  • March 19, 2015 at 1:03 pm
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    yay for you! 9 follies for DOR sounds great. It’s too bad you are having side effects, but I’m hoping that the side effects mean the drugs are actually working.

    Reply
    • March 19, 2015 at 2:41 pm
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      Turtle,
      Thanks! I’m not finding the side effects to be that bad actually. I am dealing well with the brief waves that do hit me. They do seem to be working yup. lol
      XOXXO, Unpregnant Chicken

      Reply
  • March 19, 2015 at 1:20 pm
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    Yay for 9 follicles!!!! That’s awesome news. Will continue to keep my fingers crossed and send grow vibes your way.

    I remember all the emotions that went with IVF. The drugs are certainly to blame as you are pumping your body full of hormones. I still find myself suppressing laughs when women complain about hormones or menopause. Most have zero clue how bad it truly can be. Hang in there. You’re halfway through.

    Reply
    • March 19, 2015 at 2:43 pm
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      Cristy,
      Thanks! I am hoping I am more than half way though, some of those follies are RIPE. lol I hope only 2 or 4 more days of stims to go! lol
      XOXXO, Unpregnant Chicken

      Reply
  • March 22, 2015 at 4:47 pm
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    I was so happy to see your update! I will be starting IVF in June when school gets out for the summer because I am a teacher. So, for now I am nervously looking forward to that and counting down the days. It seems like time has a crazy way of going by really really fast and really really slow at the same time…if that makes any sense. Anyways, thank you once again for sharing your experiences, and I am hoping beyond hope that this will be your LAST struggle with infertility and the outcome of all this hard work will be a beautiful baby!!

    Reply
    • March 23, 2015 at 7:16 am
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      Jennifer,
      Thanks for your kind words! Fingers crossed for you as well! Waiting that long must be torture! I had to wait 3 months between last IUI and IVF and it felt like soooo long. Baby dust!
      XOXXO, Unpregnant Chicken

      Reply
  • March 23, 2015 at 6:04 am
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    Yay happy to hear its going well, thanks for sharing, and we are all hoping and praying for you.

    Reply
    • March 23, 2015 at 7:17 am
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      Iris,
      It’s going great. Hoping for trigger today.
      XOXXO, Unpregnant Chicken

      Reply
  • March 27, 2015 at 8:26 am
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    Sending you heaps of positivity, prayers and anything else you might need right now:) message me any time!

    Reply
    • March 27, 2015 at 10:29 am
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      Melanie,
      I appreciate your support.
      XOXXO, Unpregnant Chicken

      Reply
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