What’s Our Lucky Number?/How Many Eggs (Follicles) Did We Get?

There were only five mature eggs (follicles) in my ovaries. Only five?………

I was really hoping, with everything inside of me, that there were seven… What did all this mean? What were we supposed to learn? Why did this happen?

Bursts of anger snuck into my peaceful mind. We could have finished this whole thing with the FIRST cycle. I felt like the previous decisions made about stopping the cycles, had been put on me. So when this happened, I felt like I should have decided to go through with it on the first cycle. It would have saved everyone time, money, and energy. GURRR:(

Gordon reminded me that we had both made the decisions, and that we based it on the professionals’ opinions and our guidance from God. He encouraged me to put away the beating stick and focus on what I had created. He continued by telling me that we wouldn’t be here and wouldn’t be this far in the process if it wasn’t for me and what I strived to accomplish.

What a guy! He helped me find the peace that I worked so hard to keep.

Be Strong, My Amazing Heart!

My heart had been affected much more than I realized. All the extreme and rapid fluctuations of hormones going through my body with each cycle we tried, was more than my heart could handle…I was having alot more symptoms, and feeling worse everyday. I honestly didn’t know if I was going to be around to raise this baby/babies that we were trying so hard to get, or my daughter.

I was supposed to be scheduled for my third open-heart surgery this same month. As you can imagine, timing was horrible!

Now that this was the last cycle we would try, I just wanted to finish the process before I went to see my cardiologist. He had to give the okay at the beginning of the process, that my heart could handle the medications and the egg retrieval, and I didn’t want him to change his mind base on how I was doing now. I was afraid that if I went to see him before we were finished, that the whole thing would be stopped. I couldn’t risk that, we were too close………

Last Cycle/Last Chance:(

So as I mentioned before, the doctors said this would be our last cycle, our last chance! They may have let us keep trying, but made it clear that in their opinion, the results would be very similar. They weren’t sure that the added medication would make much of a difference, but we were ALL willing to try just about anything. I felt like I was under alot of pressure.

The doctors all got together and agreed on one professional opinion. They encouraged us to continue with the egg retrieval and transfer, regardless of if I could produce enough eggs. (Enough meaning 8-12 mature eggs.) They had hopes that the new, added medication would help a little, and figured this would be our best shot.

We obviously wanted to see what the results were before we sealed the deal, but we had mostly made up our minds that this was IT!!! Gordon and I once again, put our complete trust and faith in God.

The decision felt so scary, like we had come to the end of our rope, like the clock would stopped ticking………….And yet, at the same time, I felt a sigh of relief…Like it was almost over…We could get on with our lives…….

Floods of thoughts and emotions swept over me….I wasn’t sure which thought or feeling was the strongest or which ones I should feel guilty about. It changed every second, as I was completely overwhelmed, and yet at times, peaceful about where we were at.

Synchronizing Cycles/Important Medications/Inch and a Half Long Needles!

With the help of the birth control, Alice and my cycles were synchronized. (I guess it is good for something, lol)

The doctors put us back on Lupron shots, which shut off the connection from our brains to our ovaries. This way, the professionals could completely control our hormones without interference from the normal process of the body.

She was also put back on Progesterone injections. Progesterone is one of the reproductive hormones normally produced by the ovary after ovulation. It is needed to prepare the endometrium (uterus) for implantation of an embryo.

I forgot to mention earlier, that the Progesterone shots were not the little needles that we used for the lupron shots. Through the two previous cycles and for three weeks, Alice had Progesterone shots every day. She had to use one and a half-inch long needles and have her husband stick it in her glute muscle. Ya, you guess it! Right in her ASS!!! And then, if that’s not bad enough, he had to pull back the needle to make sure it wasn’t in a vein. If it was, he had to pull it out, and do it again. The medication has to go into the muscle, not a vein. Inch and a half, holy hell! That’s freaky!

Here she was giving it a third try for us. Another three weeks!

She told me that through the previous cycle, she had a few times where she almost passed out while her husband was giving her the shot!!!!!!!

Along with the Lupron shots, I started back on Follistim shots. Two simple belly shots, compared to Alice. The Follistim is a follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), the hormone that stimulates the ovaries.
The new super-boost injections that the doctors put me on was called Ganirelix Acetate. It also stimulates the ovaries, while preventing eggs from being released prematurely.

I made up my mind that I could push through one more cycle, and would give it all I had.

Astronomical Costs!!!/Starting AGAIN

The year came and went. Here we were in 2010, the beginning of another year. And starting into another cycle.

January 6th, Alice and I stopped birth control. PHEW!!!! And a few days later, we both started back on our fertility injections.

Each time we started the invitro-surrogate process over with a new cycle, we had to front $3,000 for medications, and $1,500 for labs. We were now $38,000 into it. Only $13,000 more than we planned on….Good shit! And none of it guaranteed a baby!!! If we didn’t get pregnant, we wouldn’t get any of the money back, either. WOW!!!

This amount did not include the three insurance policies/premiums ($250 a month) that we had been paying for our surrogate mother since June 2009.

I felt like we were in way over our heads, and it seemed to sneak up on us. I felt scared to make to next move, for fear of losing EVERYTHING!!!

The Waiting Game/Holiday Break???

I started back on medications to calm and quiet my ovaries AGAIN, and Alice and I both started back on birth control AGAIN…… Stupid birth control! I felt like it was controlling my life….I wasn’t myself when I was on it.

The doctors had mentioned that they had one more drug they could add to the mix right at the end of the next cycle. It was supposed to super-boost everything, but could be dangerous. They stressed that this would be the last cycle that they would recommend. If it didn’t work next time, they didn’t have any other ideas……

As Alice and I waited again for our bodies to regulate so we could start another cycle process, I tried very hard to forget about all of it for a minute… I wanted to just BE with my family through the holidays and enjoy what I DID have….I had completely exhausted myself, and needed a serious break…………

Right at the beginning of the surrogate process, I had committed be present with my daughter and to stay conscious about not pushing Destynee aside while we were trying to get pregnant. I felt like I was staying pretty focused on her during the preliminary work and during the first cycle, but I realized that through all the stress of the second cycle, I wasn’t as present as I wanted to be with her.

In the back of my mind, I was scared about what the final outcome would be, but for the most part, I was able to reconnect with my adorable daughter, Destynee, and my amazingly, supportive husband, Gordon.

I managed, at times, to find peace about what was going on. This time I embraced the month and a half break for my ovaries. I continued to support them, and through inspiration, gave them what I thought they needed to be strong.

Alice and her family spent Christmas with us. We had a great time and were able to talk a lot about what we were both going through.