Friday, January 31, 2014

Day2 blood is a go

CD2 blood&ultra sound is a go. Officially ok'ed to start meds tomorrow with Folistim,Menopur and Clomid. 

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Ready to take off

Period came this morning. Finally we nail the one thing that anchors everything else involved in this brave last IVF journey!!
Round trip flight...check!
Piece of mind.... .....TBA
Note that CCRM does not accept ACH, patients are expected to either utilize their CREDIT CARD or MAKE A WIRE TRANSFER AT THE BANK. We FedEx ours via Overnight FedEx.
We will be in CO from Feb5--13th, and I am expecting to have some FUN!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

When Love Doesn't Conquer Everything

Some days are just better than others.
Today is one of those "meh" days.
I feel like a determined baby sea turtle crawling out of sand hole, trying to make my way to the blue ocean. I'm not alone, there are many of us, my brothers and sisters, defenseless and naive. It's a short struggle to where we belong, where we will feel safe and completed for many, many years. But, alas, the price we pay! Our natural enemies are gawking, they take us for delicious meals and they feed us to their hungry little ones. Nature's order. Some of us escape, some don't. The ones escaped their land enemies are far from safe, they still need to watch out for hiding dangers in the ocean while growing to be stronger.
Trying to have a baby by any method echoes every bit of this analogy.  Infertility will take you, without any reasonable explanation or mercy, it will consume you with anger, sorrow and jealousy. There is no answer as to why infertility happens to some people, while others breath out babies. Human reproductive system is composed of many components, it's a factory that is suppose to work self efficiently. When the factory suffers malfunction, the chain is broken. A.R.T is suppose to fix it so we can get back on production schedule, but there is no guaranty.
Yesterday my poor husband S had his 9th TESE. We rushed the tissue to the cryo bank, so far we haven't received any bad news, since the cryo tech warned us that we need to be prepared in the event that "they don't find any sperm from the TESE tissue."  This hasn't even crossed my mind. If there are anything we can count on, it's MY triple lining & HIS sperm. These two never fail us despite our bumpy IVF upbringing.
The urologist who once called us "the unfortunate couple" said that he admire us for being so persistent.  We are just two adults wanting to have a few babies to raise, that's not much to ask from life.
In Denmark, our latest RE said if one of us can produce something supreme quality, we would had much better than 1% chance with our own parts, hence either the Egg or the Sperm. Sadly my "age advantage" doesn't bring me any upper hand but continue to disappoint us with less -than -adequate egg quality.
The SHITTIEST thing about INFERTILITY is there is no guaranty.  You can work your ass off, and still be childless. There is no ending to infertility unless we are willing to give up something.
Love doesn't conquer infertility, love motivate us to challenge infertility and give it a hell of fight.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Sarah's sensitivity training

Ever been stuck in a small waiting room next to someone having loud and non stop conversations on cal phone? I could hear the person on the other side of the line...
I tried not to "hear in" but the core of her conversation was all surrounding her friend's friend's unintended pregnancy, her own baby making, and how unattractive she felt while she herself was pregnant. Sigh, some people are so fertile that babies are popping out of them by accidents, I'm sitting there, bitting my lips while despatatly trying to distract myself to something else less depressing...
Now moving on to a more positive side of life, our pup is turning 6 1/2 month. He has been a joy, a pain and a weapon of mass dystruction of many household objects, including my 3rd cellphone cover. Now he's almost done with teething, but he's tall enough to sneak things off of tables, we are still puppy proofing our home.  Caring for it gave us lots of fun and frustration, though it is in no way like caring for a baby, I do feel somehow less anxious.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

One week before cycle # 1--HOW ARE WE DOING?

Lately I've been feeling as if I'm about to burst with what's coming to us, to know there is a future ahead of us already had our fate deemed, without a shred of mercy but cold, calculated rationality.  Our dream to have biological children maybe once again declined by nature's will...and the time, the tears, the internal struggle we both's almost too much to express, thanks to the EPP priming!
First, let me start with the original instruction from my progesterone suppository label which says "TAKE ONE BY MOUTH VAGINAL TWICE /DAY". ha.

Lots going on, much attributed by coordinating sperm transfer and foreplay before our cycle.
We have a vial of 3 year old sperm in CWRC that we are transporting to CCRM.  CCRM uses Urology associates for sperm retrival.  We have done TESE(Testicular sperm extraction) for the past 6 cycles due to our male factor. When we visited the office during our ODWU, we met with the urologist, who was and still is very pleasant.  HOWEVER, they insist on doing a PESA(Percutaneous epididymal sperm aspiration) in which the patient is put under Anesthesia where they will cut open the testicles for sperm located in the epididymis, rather than a TESE which extracts sperms cells in the testicle. The latter has always worked great for us, and is one of the few things we can always count on in this painfully unpredictable process. The difference? None that we could notice, since DH had both in the past.

The difference in CCRM's case? -$4100. CCRM charges a "facility fee" of $2600 for the urologist to perform PESA in their facility, and we will still have to pay the urologist a $1500 fee. None of this is covered by insurance mind you. So we thought, well, we will just let the urologist know that we prefer a TESE over a PESA, get the bill corrected and move on to the cycle. WRONG. After numerous of calls and messages to several secretaries, we finally spoke with the urologist. What should have been a simple request turns into a 3 day phone tag, still no sign to budge. We started to feel that with one week left to pay off the bill, if the urologist and us can't agree on the sperm retrieval method, our cycle basically won't happen, and so far they have not been willing to change the protocol.

Now, many people's attitude about CCRM is "why not go all the way if you are already cycling with THE MOST EXPENSIVE institution in the US??" Sure, CCRM is a magical place that made so many people's baby dream come true. Most people in our group swear by its fabulous lab quality, and I don't doubt that.  BUT does that mean we are going to be stripped away our senses and be slaughtered like cows simply because we have no choice but to obey? This is an extra of $4100 we are speaking of, on top of our $35000 IVF bill. Money doesn't grow on trees, (does it?) and with literately no insurance coverage, we are (like most people) paying everything out of pocket.  (Our TESE in New York City, was under a thousand dollars--NEW YORK CITY!! )

So we decided to forgo the fresh sperm retrieval at the Urologist Associates, instead do a TESE in NY, ship both frozen sperm to CCRM for the cycle. Would it make a huge difference? I really doubt it. It's more important that I have a better egg production, which we'll find out soon...


Friday, January 17, 2014

A little extra help!

A dear group member who had a surprise pregnancy(yay) prior to her cycle is selling me her Folistim and ovidrel  for a fraction of cost to us, it's not a lot compare to our cost but it brings some comfort:)

2nd hiccup

Yesterday I had a phone call with my nurse at CCRM, going thruogh some general reports. When I mentioned to her that I had finished my Doxycycline a few days ago and now only taking Testosterone gel and Estridol, she says--"what about Prometrium?" I was like "---WHAT."
She said it was on my calendar, and it was indeed but when she ordered my meds 10 some days ago I picked everything up from the pharmacy, there was NO Prometrium mentioned. I almost started to hyperventilate because this could mean our cycle is SCRATCHED :(
She quickly said she she would speak with the doctor and get back to me. Meanwhile I called my pharmacy for any record of Prometrium being ordered, they firmly replied no, they only received orders for Prenatal, Testosterone gel, Doxycycline and Estridol.  A few minutes after the nurse got back to tell me Dr. S was ok for me to continue as long as I stay on it for 10 days. As of now my estimate ER date is pushed to Feb11th--I'm thankful that my cycle is still on, but what a rocky start. I'm in no mood to dig for "fault", just happy to be able to stay on. 
If you are reading this post as result of cycling or thinking of cycling with the cerlebrized CCRM, make sure you read your calendar and question everything that you deem confusing. They are good at what they do, they charge a lot of money to do it but it DOES NOT mean they won't make mistake!!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

More general update

So I received my CCRM IVF bill. It's awful a lot of money. And yes we knew this was going to be all along. But it is STILL an awful a lot of money.
We finally complete the frozen sperm transfer paper work yesterday at CWRC, that's been a neck pain for the both of us since OCT.
Our cycle is looking smooth down the road, provide we do pay our bill in full. I'm happy that my Day2 is looking promising, at the same time, are we INSANE to be throwing in $35000 into our 9th cycle that may only reveal the cause of our infertility???
Another note, Our FB CCRM support group will soon welcome its 100th member. Consider when we were only a 2 member group, it has come a long way.  I'm happy to see the CCRM girls/boys have a safe place to share, vent and question, so far this is the most positive thing came out of our struggle.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

General update

My day 2 blood that was shipped  to CCRM finally came back at a "all normal", I'm cleared for a calendar at last--tentative ER date 02/03/14. Meanwhile my Beta 3 integrin test was a total waste, doctor at hospital took the WRONG sample...:( very upsetting when you do everything by the book and your doctors screws it up-- at a $600 out of pocket cost to me:(
The FB CCRM group is now a 80 people group, whoa! In 2 months!
I haven't much to update since my blogger friend is very much preggers, I feel like she has said everything there is to be said about infertility, about CCRM and about all the sufferings and fear.
I still think about out upcoming cycle every day, since now we are really getting somewhere.  I still feel the pressure, but really it is what it is, I just have to believe the power of science, love and keep trying.