Thursday, January 31, 2008

Arrrrrrrgh! conversation

Wow, I have been a really bad blogger lately. And I've even had some things to blog about, but I just haven't been in the mood.

I completed my 5 days of Clomid over the weekend, and I'm already coming up to my CD12 ultrasound tomorrow! I started OPKs today (CD11), to avoid almost missing the egg like I did last month. I can't believe it's already CD11. Time goes much quicker when I'm not obsessing about TTC all the time due to being busy with other stuff (work, mostly).

The big annoyance was a conversation over the weekend with my aunt, C. It was really horrible. I should preface this by saying that I have never talked to my aunt about TTC or our IF issues. I should also mention that she was over at our house, along with my parents, sister, and grandfather, for a family dinner in honor of my birthday.

Anyway, C, S (hubby), and I were in the kitchen, and C brought up a newspaper article that she had seen the day before. The article talked about the outsourcing of surrogacy to women in India. Americans are going there and paying several thousand dollars to hire a gestational surrogate. I said, "Yes, I read about that a few weeks ago."

My aunt then expressed her repugnance for the idea. I said, "Well, I don't think it's disgusting. The women in India already have children of their own, and it's a way for them to make more money than they could earn 10 years, and helps them provide for their family." Maybe you agree with me, or maybe not, but this was where the conversation took a turn for the worse.

My aunt then says, "Well, if people can't have children on their own, I don't think that they should. God is trying to tell them something."

I was so shocked and angry at that point that I said, "I completely disagree with you and I think you should know that Scott and I are having problems. So you are basically saying that you don't think that we should be parents. You are saying that a lot of wonderful children that I know should have never been born."

The thing that really bothered me is that my aunt didn't even really apologize. She did say something like, "well I'll make an exception for you guys, but I still don't think it's right. People should adopt..." ARGH! Not that I'm against adoption, but I think that it is wrong to tell people what choice they should make when they are trying to build their family.

Why couldn't she just realize that she had put her foot in her mouth and say, "Wow, I'm really sorry. I had no idea that you were going through this." ? Instead, she proceeded to ask me, "Do you know what the problem is?" To which I said, "Yes, we know, but I'm not going to discuss it with you." Next, she tried to shift the focus to "those rich people" and her theory that most of the women in the article were probably going to India for a surrogate because they didn't want to go through the pain or disfigurement of pregnancy. I told her that I disagreed with her and that any of my "friends" who are going through infertility (referring to you guys!) would probably do just about anything to be able to be pregnant with their own child.

My aunt doesn't understand any of this, though. She is 51 years old, never married, and has no children. I think she vaguely wanted children, but not strongly enough to do anything about it, and she treats her dogs as children.

Needless to say, this put a bit of a damper on the rest of my birthday celebration. Luckily my parents, grandfather, and sister were not in the room at the time. S was standing there, but he really didn't say a word during the entire conversation. I think he was just letting me deal with it since it is my clueless family member. I've had a few days to let this percolate, and now I'm back to feeling vaguely sorry for my aunt and her lonely life. I've made her sound horrible, but she really does care about me and I'm sure she wishes me the best. I think she just let the conversation get out of hand and didn't know how to really apologize, and turned defensive instead. Argh.

I don't plan on telling her any specifics about IUIs or IVF. I'm afraid that she will pry it out of my mom, though. On Monday, I basically told my mom, "If you tell her my private information, I'm going to stop telling you anything." So, hopefully she won't. It's not the end of the world if she does know, but if I ever tell her, I want it to be on my terms.

I have a whole 'nother entry's worth of stuff to blog about. Last Monday we met with Dr G to talk about our next steps (namely, IVF)!! But I'll have to save that for another day, 'cause it's getting late. Check back late Friday (2/1/08) for a CD12 ultrasound report!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Happy Birthday to Me!

Yes, today is my 33rd birthday. I was definitely not thrilled about it. Birthdays have really not seemed exciting since my early 20s, and they seem even worse now that I am hearing the tick-tock of my biological clock. I realize that if I'm lucky I'll be able to have my first child before age 35, but any subsequent children will be automatically "high risk" and amniocentesis / CVS may be recommended. Yikes.

33 is still "early 30's", though, right? I'm not ready to call myself "mid-30's" quite yet! Don't get me wrong, though. My thirties have been great so far. I met S a little over 4 weeks after my 30th birthday, and my life has changed in many wonderful ways since then.

Anyway, today was a regular workday for me (hematology clinic), and I didn't mention my birthday to anyone during the day. I was not with my lab group, so no one knew about it. Actually, one woman had noticed my garnet necklace last week and asked me if I was a January baby, which led me to tell her, but she had forgotten about it by today. I thought about mentioning it, but in some ways it seemed like an obvious bid for attention, and I wasn't quite in the mood. I'm a hippocrite, though, because instead, I'm bringing it up HERE!! Obviously, I must want some attention, or why am I mentioning it at all!

S remembered, though, and so did my parents, aunt, grandfather, several friends (via email and phone calls), and one other co-worker. S had to work until 7 PM, so we didn't go out tonight. Instead, he bought home Thai takeout (YUM!), cake, and got me two nice gifts.

Mandatory IF report:
I had an CD2 ultrasound yesterday. My lining was still pretty thick at 10 mm, which made sense as my period was just starting to really flow at that point. No major cysts, but just the usual polycystic "string of pearls" appearance to my ovaries. I got the go-ahead to do Clomid cycle #3. Again my dose will be 50 mg days 3-7. Bring on the night sweats, baby!!

Dr A did the ultrasound yesterday, and I appreciated something that he said. I made an offhand comment about how we'd be doing this cycle, and then maybe a natural IUI, and then IVF right after that. I clearly sounded like I did not expect the IUIs to work, and that IVF is inevitable for us. He said, "Wait! This (meaning the Clomid/IUI cycle) may well work for you. We wouldn't be doing it if there wasn't a good chance that it will be successful." I wonder if he knows how a little comment like that can brighten someone's day?

Anyway, I do like his positive attitude (but hate that he often seems rushed). The 3 recent IUI success stories among my blogroll friends have also been a source of inspiration. (I believe it was 1 Clomid/IUI, one letrozole/IUI, and one injectable/IUI.) Yay girls!! I also heard of a "friend of a friend" who got pregnant on IUI#4. Yay!

Second to last thing: Target ($22.99) is cheaper than either Sav-On ($28, I think) or Rite Aid (low $30-range) for Clomid 50 mg x 5 days. Also, there was a "free $10 Target gift card with any new presciption" coupon in the Sunday newspaper's Target ad, so that made it an even better deal. Yay. I also picked up my 3rd(!!) bottle of prenatal vitamins. Yes, I am almost done with my second 200-count bottle of prenatals. This means that I have been TTC for about 400 days. Sounds about right... I'm surprised that I didn't accidentally miss more doses than that along the way.

Last thing: My Pet Peeve in a retail establishment: when someone sees my almost empty shopping cart and proceeds to STEAL it while I am doing something else! Hey, bozo, there was a jar of lotion in that cart! In case you are completely oblivious, perhaps that almost-but-not-quite-empty cart belongs to the woman at the nearby counter who is filling out some pharmacy related paperwork! I swear, if I would have run into a customer with that raspberry body butter lotion in their cart, I would have probably said something to them. Grrrr! So, you don't feel like walking all the way back to the front of the store to get another cart... well NEITHER DO I!! Ahh, I feel much better now!! Thanks for letting me get that one off my chest. :)

Sunday, January 20, 2008

16 DPIUI#2

After not bothering to temp yesterday, but not feeling any cramps yet, I did check my temp this morning. It actually went up a bit today, but I'm not going to let myself even think about it... (Although, I am obviously letting myself blog about it). A few hours beforehand, I had woken up sweating (usually a sign that my temp is dropping fast), and I had a migraine yesterday. Both of these suggest that my period will be here any time!! Not to mention the lack of even the slightest pregnancy symptoms. Hrrrrumph!

There's not even a pregnancy test in this house (except my secret stash of digitals), and I am NOT going to test. I truly always have these protacted luteal phases and I have gotten to 17 DPO before, only to have my period show up then. That's probably what happening again this month. The only strange thing is that my temperature started dropping earlier than usual this cycle, so I thought that my period would start earlier than usual. I think that something about giganto-follicle (28mm) has thrown things out of whack.

In the meantime, I actually finished up most of that horrendous To Do list that I posted last weekend (other than the last item). What a relief!! Today, I remain on "backup call" for consults at the hospital, but I hope to be around here to watch this Charger-Patriots game. Go Chargers! I lived in Boston for 4 years (college), during the Drew Bledsoe era, so I actually like the Patriots too...unless they are playing the Chargers.

We scheduled an appointment with Dr G to discuss IVF on Monday, January 28th. As for this next cycle, I still haven't decided whether to use Clomid or go au natural, but we are definitely planning to do IUI again. It's scary how quickly I am getting used to shelling out all of this $$$ every month.

I am so thrilled to see that FOUR of the women on my "Other Sites I Frequent" blogroll are now pregnant! What an inspiration!!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

13DPIUI #2

Thank you all for the positive thoughts! Unfortunately, my temp is already starting to drop, so I'm even less excited to test. I may even start bleeding before I get a chance to do so. I'm not trying to be negative, but I am trying to be realistic. Well, there's always next month...

It looks like we're going to have to do a up to *3* more IUI's (1-2 more Clomid, and 1 natural cycle IUI?) prior to IVF. This is because I am on a stressful inpatient block at work in March. I can't really be leaving for an hour per day to get bloodwork or ultrasounds, and then take a day off for egg retrieval. Well, I probably could, but I would have to explain the situation to about 10 people and I don't feel like doing that, especially since I am trying to get hired. Also, I think that the stress of work would not be optimal for a fragile embryo trying to find a spot to snuggle in.

Unfortunately, blocking off the month of March ruins 2 separate cycles (Cycle #15 (Feb/March) and Cycle #16 (March/April)). I would love to start now for Jan/Feb, but Dr G wants me to take at least 1 month off between Clomid and starting meds for IVF. The bottom line is, I likely won't be able to start IVF until mid-April. How frustrating! In the meantime, though, we'll keep doing these Clomid or natural IUI's and really hope that we somehow get lucky by a miracle.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

12 DPIUI #2

...and no symptoms whatsoever, except for that vaginal irritation thing that happens to me after a few days of using the progesterone suppositories. I must confess, I am taking fewer than the prescribed number. 1) I don't think I need them, 2) the dose that I am supposed to take is 2-3 x as much as other people have been prescribed, and 3) they irritate some very precious areas and cause yellowish discharge and burning. So, yeah, I am using them, but I have decreased the dose just a bit!

I wish I could say that I have cramping, breast tenderness, or anything else, but I feel absolutely nothing out of the ordinary. I also realize that I am out of Dollar Tree home pregnancy tests. I do own two digital pregnancy tests which are buried in the back of the closet, and which I bought about 4-5 months ago when they went on sale at Target. However, I long ago vowed that I will not use them until I have at least some kind of minimal line on a cheapo HPT. I'd rather look at a glaring white test strip than the cruel words, "NOT PREGNANT"! So, it looks like I won't be testing 'til Saturday (15DPIUI!!) this month, which will be my first chance to go to Dollar Tree..

In hematology clinic today we saw a woman who is a few years older than me, and who is in her second trimester of pregnancy. When I first read this the patient list, I thought, "Oh...great! Just what I needed today! Another reminder of how easy it is for most people to get pregnant."

However, upon reading her chart in more detail, I realized that she is pregnant via IVF for MFI, which is the problem that S and I have! AND...she got pregnant at the same clinic that we go to! After I realized this, I felt much happier about meeting her. Beforehand, I wondered if I would end up making any subtle comment along the lines of, "Believe me, I know how hard it can be..." but as it turns out, she was SO anxious that there was never a moment where it would have been appropriate to do so.

Afterwards, I was eating lunch with my colleague B, and he told me that his wife is 8 weeks pregnant. He immediately apologized for having to tell me (as he knows that S & I have been trying for quite a while now), which was nice of him, but unnecessary. I'm happy for them! He reminded me that it took them 24 months to get pregnant with #1, and 18 months to get pregnant with this child, #2. S & I are in Cycle 13. He is kind of a member of the "relax and it will happen" school. He attributes his wife's pregnancy to the fact that he recently signed a contract for his job for next year, so they no longer have the question of "where will we be living and what will our income be on July 1st?" looming over their head. He told me, "You'll get pregnant as soon as your job stuff gets settled."

Speaking of which... some promising things happened for me on the job front over the weekend. Nothing is settled quite yet, but it looks pretty good. I shouldn't say any more than that just yet. :)

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Claiming Names

Today, my sister told me that she needed to talk to me about something. She told me that she wants a to "claim" a certain first name for her future daughter. The name is Natalie, and she has heard me mention before that I like that name and that I would using consider it.

We then went on to discuss several other names. Almost every name I mentioned, she wanted to "claim" for her own exclusive use. And every name I rejected, she says that she also dislikes. Coincidental or not, we do seem to share a similar taste in names.

I know that this sounds like my sister is being rather annoying, and maybe more than a little bratty. But to be honest, the conversation kinda amused me. After all, I have all the power in this situation. Remember, my sister is nine years old! :) :)

Edited to add: S just said that he previously dated not just one but TWO women with that name, so it's probably off my list anyway!


I haven't been blogging much lately because I haven't had much to say. I somehow just don't have very much hope for this cycle. In a few days, however, I will probably be going crazy and looking for any symptoms to give me hope.

Today is day 8 post IUI. If I were pg, perhaps I would be getting a bit of implantation bleeding or cramping around now. (I read that implantation usually occurs between 7DPO and 10DPO). No symptoms yet, though.

I think my blah attitude is also related to stress. [Warning: Stop reading this paragraph NOW if you want to avoid a really boring and whiny list of why I am stressed out]. I'm recovering from a nasty cold earlier in the week and I have a ton of work to do:
1)I'm on "back up call" this weekend, which means that I may be called into the hospital at any time during daytime hours for a hematology or oncology consultation.
2) I need to prepare for my VA clinic on Monday.
3) I'm moonlighting overnight at the hospital Monday night (which often means very little sleep, and what sleep there is comes in a little twin bed in a windowless room in the hospital).
4) I have a protocol review committee meeting on Tuesday evening that I need to prepare for by reading some of the protocols and offering my never-brilliant commentary.
5) I need to read to prepare for hematology clinic on Wednesday with Dr S (the somewhat intimidating division chief who has my career future in his hands)
6) I'm giving an hour long morning conference on Friday morning, in front of all of the other heme/onc fellows and faculty, and oh yeah, I still need to actually prepare the presentation for this conference. It usually takes me about 12 hours to prepare for it.
7) I'm teaching a med school small group (my first time ever doing this!!, topic: breast cancer) on Friday afternoon.
8) Then I am on "backup call" again all next weekend, which is a three day weekend.
9) And I still have to work on that Phase I clinical trial protocol and of course my lab project. Both of these projects also have career implications for me.

I front-loaded my year (which runs July thru June) with weekend responsibilities because I hoped to be either Very Pregnant or on maternity leave by mid to late Spring. How sad! I am glad to be done with all weekend responsibilities after next weekend, though. I promise that I don't usually have quite that much stress in my life! I think that the above list sounds even worse than it really is.

Last night we had dinner with our friends G & Y, who have two delightful daughters (age 2 and 4) conceived thru IVF with ICSI. They had almost the same fertility issues that we have, and they are really supportive and understanding. It is always good to talk to them.

I hope to be back in a day or two to report some symptoms (whether real or imagined)!

Saturday, January 5, 2008

IUI #2

My temp dipped a bit on Friday morning (PHEW!). Hopefully that means that we didn't miss the O, and that Friday would be the day for the egg to come on out to play.

S gave his "deposit" at 7:30 AM. He said that he was the first person to arrive to the RE's office; when he got there, the lights were still dim and the door was locked. Luckily, at least one person was there to let him in. (And apparently, the other staff arrived very soon thereafter.) He's had a pretty bad cold for the last few days, but he felt like it was a pretty good sample.

I fidgeted my way through two back-to-back (work) conferences until about 9:45, at which point I high-tailed my way over to the RE's office. Luckily, it's only about 5 minutes from the Cancer Center, so I was right on time. One of the two other people in the waiting room was an early-30's-age good-looking guy, sitting by himself. I would bet that he was there to give a "deposit," too. In a weird way, sometimes seeing other really normal looking people in the waiting room makes me feel like S and I are a little more normal, too. (That's also why I like participating in this blog community.)

Pretty soon I got called back into the exam room. I undressed from the waist down, wrapped the white paper drape around my waist, and flipped the light to indicate that I was ready. While waiting, I started reading an article I had brought (about ovarian cancer) to prepare for my first day in Gynecology/Oncology clinic.

Dr W (the young woman just out of training) came in. The first words out of her mouth were "11.4 million." I guess she knew I was going to ask about the total motile sperm count. Apparently, they want "more than 10 million", so I'm pretty satisfied with that number. Of course, even more would be better, but I won't complain. We had 11 million with IUI#1 last month, so it's very similar.

I then said, "Hey, you did your residency at [the university where I work], right?"

"I did my fellowship there."

Ooops! As a fellow myself, I am acutely aware of these kinds of hierarchies. Residents are ranked below fellows, but for some reason I had forgotten that RE's are fellowship trained. Well, at least that makes me feel that Dr W and I are closer to the same age. I had been thinking that if she were just out of residency, I might be up to 2 years ahead of her!

Anyway, I then chatted with her for a minute about the fact that I was starting a Gynecology/Oncology rotation. She of course knows Dr P, the attending physician who I will be working with this month. Anyway, it was nice to connect with her for a moment.

Dr A (one of the older, more experienced REs) had problems getting the catheter through my cervix with IUI #1, and I was told to "come with a full bladder next time". Well, my bladder was moderately full yesterday, but not to the ready-to-burst stage, as I don't want to pee on anyone! Despite this, Dr W had the same trouble with my cervix. At first, she thought that maybe my uterus was retroverted ("tipped"), but she looked at my records and checked a quick ultrasound and confirmed that it is anteverted (which is "normal").

She used some sort of thin metal instrument (called a "sound") first and got that in through the cervix successfully. I had a couple of sharp pains deep inside when she went through the internal cervical os. I wasn't clear on whether she then removed the sound, or whether she then tried to insert the catheter alongside it, but the catheter itself is floppy and didn't want to go through. (I know this all sounds horrible, but do not be alarmed; it is MUCH easier than an HSG.) I asked whether this tight internal cervical os could be contributing to difficulties with TTC, and she said, "No, as long as blood is getting out every month, sperm can get in." Well, that makes sense to me; sperm are a lot tinier than a catheter.

She then said that she thought it would be helpful to use a different catheter with less floppy tubing. My anxiety welled up again: "You won't lose too many sperm by transfering it, will you?" She said ,"no," and I decided just to accept that answer as truth and not worry about it anymore.

She and the nurse came back after a few minutes, and with a bit more poking, prodding, and sharp pains, the sample was in! She kinda apologized at the end: "I made you bleed a little, so you'll have a little spotting today." I then rested for the mandated 10 minutes (again reading about ovarian cancer), popped a doxycycline, and left the room.

They scheduled a beta-HCG for Sunday, 12/20/08 at 8:45 AM. I again told them that I'm not coming if I have a negative HPT. And again, they didn't mention anything about vaginal progesterone, so I asked. The nurse said that yes, I need to take it again. Ugh... I'm not looking forward to that irritation again. I guess I will take it starting tomorrow AM. It should possibly start tonight, but I want to see what my temp does in the morning. Today, by the way, it bumped up a bit but is still just below the coverline. However, my cervical fluid has changed from eggwhite Thursday to creamy yesterday to sticky today, so I have a feeling that the O did happen. Fingers crossed, knocking on wood, and saying prayers that this works.

After the visit, I spent the afternoon working with Dr P in Gynecology/Oncology clinic. It was weird to go from lying in stirrups myself in the AM, to standing at the other end of the exam table in the same afternoon. I saw one patient with endometrial cancer, several with ovarian cancer, and one with immature teratoma. It was an interesting day, and took my mind off of "me me me."

After work, S & I had a "date night". After getting two hallway tables at Bomb.ay Company (which is going out of business) and a few picture frames at A.aron Br.others, followed by a hurried bite to eat, we saw an excellent movie. It was "The Ki.te Run.ner," and I highly recommend it. I want to read the book now. I'll probably wait a few months to a year, though, just to give some time for the story to fade from my mind.

Now I'm at my (admittedly low-key) moonlighting job, earning $$ to pay for all of this! (All of our tests and procedures and meds for IF are 100% out of pocket for us, unfortunately).

Thursday, January 3, 2008

We Might Be Rebels

Well, I talked it over with S, and he is really against getting busy tonight as he feels it will diminish his semen volume signficantly. I think the general thinking is that only 10% of the sperm gets in thru the cervix via intercourse, so maybe it really is better to wait. In any case, he has it firmly in his mind that sex tonight will lead to low volume tomorrow AM, so I'm thinking that the mental strain alone would probably result in a bad result if we went ahead with their recommendations. So... I think we're going to be rebels and skip out on sex today. We'll do the IUI tomorrow AM and just pray that the egg doesn't pop out until then. No wonder that follicle was so gigantic.

I'm assuming that the two 15 mm cysts aren't going to have enough time to ripen, which makes me sad, but oh well.

Him: 7:30 AM tomorrow. Me: 10:00 AM tomorrow. Yay!!


Argh... The nurse called me back and says that they can't do the IUI today, but that we'll do it tomorrow AM. It also means that he needs to collect the sperm deposit at his office in a sterile cup, instead of at the RE's office in the back room with the porno mags and videos.

The thing that really worries me is that they want us to get busy the old fashioned way tonight! I kept saying, "Are you sure?? My husband has borderline counts and he wants to save up a big deposit for tomorrow." She said, "Yes, we know, but we don't want to take the chance of missing the egg. This is what Dr W recommends."

So now I am really fretting about that. So much that I am thinking about making a special trip to his office this afternoon for a little lovin', just to give him about 7 extra hours to replenish his swimmers. I'm waiting for him to call me back to let me know what he thinks.

This isn't supposed to be stressful, but it is, somehow!

Gigantofollicle and a Megapositive OPK!


I was correct about the aching in my left ovary. It has 3 follicles: 15 mm, 15 mm, and a gigantofollicle of 28 mm. No wonder I am feeling it. My R ovary, on the other hand, is being lazy and is doing very little. My lining was 12.5 mm, which they said was great.

Dr. G and Dr. W (the new, younger woman) watched my ultrasound today. They did not seem alarmed by the presence of the 28 mm gigantofollicle. (From what I have read, people usually O in the low 20s). Dr G nonchalantly said, "Oh, Clomid tends to make big follicles."

He asked if I had done any OPKs yet, and I told him no, but I was planning to start today. So, the tenative plan was for me to check OPKs today and tomorrow, and if nothing by tomorrow, I would give myself an Ovidrel injection tomorrow night (Friday). I asked about the cost, and it is $70-something at the pharmacy in the building. This would result in an IUI on Saturday, which is bad timing because I am scheduled to work all day. (This particular job is a moonlighting position in a chemotherapy infusion center, and one day's work pretty much pays for one round of IUI, including the meds and ultrasounds.)

I went ahead and scheduled the IUI for Saturday, and then called my friend P, begging him to cover me at the infusion center for 1-2 hours on Saturday morning. He is the guy who has gone through a lot of IF stuff with his wife, so I kinda expected him to be sympathetic to my plight. He said he would probably be able to cover a couple hours in the morning for me, but he would get back to me. Fortunately, the RE's office is about 3 blocks from the Cancer Center, so it is pretty convenient.

Next, I came over to lab (one of my many workplaces) and checked my OPK in the bathroom. OMG. It is not only positive, but it is the most positive OPK that I have ever seen in about 8 months of checking them! I will add in a picture of it later, maybe.

So, I just called back the RE's office and told them. Of course, I am scared that the OPK was positive yesterday, too, making today O day. Unfortunately, I never checked it yesterday. I hate to admit it, but I will: that nurse Susan was right! I should NOT have waited until CD13 for this ultrasound! Also, I should have started checking my OPKs a few days ago. I guess that Clomid can sometimes make you ovulate earlier than what is typical for you.

I am kinda hoping that we will do the IUI this afternoon, but this office usually doesn't like to do them in the afternoons. There are a lot of other boring details about trying to coordinate S's deposit and the RE's schedule with S's own patient schedule -- (he is a psychologist). The nurse is going to call me back in a few minutes and let me know what works for them. Meanwhile, I just called P back and told him, "Never mind, Saturday is out."

ARGH! I am stressed and excited all at the same time!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

CD12: Achy Breaky Left Ovary

Thanks everyone for your reassurances about my last interaction at the RE's office. It made me feel better that you guys don't think that I was being "difficult." :) Hopefully they will forget about it, and hopefully I'll get to deal with one of the other nurses tomorrow. There are at least two other nurses there, so I have a decent chance of getting someone different. If it is Susan again, I'll just try to act pleasant anyway.

I just wanted to state on record (before knowing my ultrasound results) that my left ovary feels a little bit achy again. It was like that on CD13 and CD14 last month (when I had two nice follicles developing). So, I'm curious whether I have eggs on the left side AGAIN, and if so, how large they are. My ultrasound is at 9:30 AM tomorrow (Thursday).

Tuesday, January 1, 2008


OK, I need to write now or else it's going to seem too overwhelming to catch up later.

I almost wrote a long, whiny entry on 12/22, but I had too many other things to do and I didn't find the time. The brief story is that I went in for my CD2 ultrasound on what ended up being CD1. At the time of the appointment I had just *barely* started to spot. However, I needed to get the appointment on 12/22 because I was leaving for Florida at about 6:20 AM on 12/23.

Well, the ultrasound was fine: no large cysts (but still many tiny cysts that define me as having possible PCOS.) My endometrial lining was really, really thick, which was OK since my period wouldn't really start for a few more hours. I asked Dr. A whether he would be changing my Clomid dose, but he said no, 2 eggs (last month's result) is "perfect." So, I was pretty happy.

However, my interaction afterwards with the nurse (Susan) was really irritating. As I was planning a Clomid/IUI cycle, the usual protocol would dictate that I would get a CD12 ultrasound. Unfortunately, CD12 is tomorrow (1/2/08) and I am starting to work in a new clinic (hematology) tomorrow AM, and I can't really get to clinic during the morning (when they are available to do ultrasounds). Thus, I requested the ultrasound on CD11 (1/1/08). However, it turns out that the RE's office is closed on 1 or 2 days per year, and New Year's Day is one of them. I next requested for my ultrasound to be done on CD13 (1/3/08).

The nurse then said that CD10 (12/31/07) would be preferred. I asked, "Why is that?" I swear that I wasn't rude about it, just genuinely curious. She replied, "Because we need to monitor you."

Ummm, OK. Monitor me for what? I understand if I were doing injectables and the dose would be changed based on the ultrasound findings, but the Clomid is over and done with by CD10. I don't see how my behavior, or the clinic's, would change based on this ultrasound. The nurse became frustrated with my questions and began to speak with me in a very condescending manner. She just kept repeating, "We're prescribing medication and we need to monitor you. You are making it difficult by not making yourself available on CD12."

My reasoning was, "Yes, and unfortunately your office is closed on CD11." In my mind, the next best option is CD13, as that is also close to the preferred date of CD12. I have never in 12 cycles ovulated before CD15, so it's not like we're going to miss the egg. (I suspect this is the reason for the clinic's preference for CD12 or earlier, but I don't think that Susan even understands this. She is really concrete.) Anyway, I don't want to go there on CD10 and see several medium sized eggs and then have them tell me to come back 3-4 days later for another look for another $150. Anyway, Susan and I went back and forth on this several times, with me repeatedly saying, "I am not trying to be difficult. I am just trying to understand the reasoning here." Finally, Susan told me to go up front (to pay) and she would ask Dr. A. She pulled him aside (out of my earshot) and a minute later they both came up and Dr. A asked me when I usually ovulate. When I told him CD15 or later, he said, "It's fine for you to schedule your ultrasound on CD13."

OK, so I "won", I guess, but I left the clinic and started crying on the way home. I really fear that I am now branded as a "difficult patient", probably by both Dr. A and Susan. I could sort of sense that Dr. A may be a bit tired of my frequent questions, and Susan definitely got really annoyed with me during our interaction. I really want to be the patient that everyone really likes and wants to succeed. An RE's office is the last place that I'd want to be disliked. :( And I'm sure that I will have even more annoying questions and requests during IVF.

That long tale now done, we had a wonderful trip to Florida and we returned on Saturday afternoon. I took Clomid again on CD3-CD7. I definitely started having night sweats with it, and those are continuing even as the Clomid is gone. My cervical fluid is not affected; it's very good, actually. My pre-O temps are still much higher than they were back in the days before metformin and/or Clomid. So for now, I'm scheduled for an ultrasound on CD13 (Thursday 1/3/08). I really hope that the IUI will be either CD16(Sunday) or CD18 (Tuesday). Saturday and Monday are really bad due to work obligations, but I'll do whatever it takes (beg someone to cover me) to make sure that I can get there if need be.