Monday, August 11, 2014

Gavin's First Day of Kindergarten

How can this even be?  My little man is a kindergartener?

Because of my doctor appointment this morning, I wasn't able to join him on his first day of school.  Thursday night his new school had an open house so I went to that and we did our first day of school pictures then.

He's so excited about school and I can't wait to hear all about it.  Hopefully I won't here "same thing as we always do", which is what he always said about headstart when I asked him what all they did at school.

Checking out his new classroom!

I tried to get a picture of him with his new teacher, but he wasn't having it.  

Our First IUI

Last Friday at the doctor, my follicles weren't mature yet, so I had to continue taking the Follistim injections on Friday night and Saturday morning, and then Saturday night I had to get my HCG trigger shot to make me ovulate.  Wednesday and Thursday night when I had to start taking my Follistim injections in the thigh with the bigger needles instead of my stomach with the injection pen, I wasn't sure about doing it and went to my friend Heather's house and her sister, and my friend, Brandi came over and gave them to me.  Friday night I braved up and did it myself.  I can definitely say I prefer Nurse Brandi doing them.  HAHA!  After I filled the syringe and put the needle on, I turned it upside down and lost almost all the medicine and had to start over.  Thank goodness I bought the extra vial, just in case I had anymore mishaps! I also didn't stick myself hard enough in the thigh, so I had to do it again.  Yikes!  Saturday afternoon's injection went alot better!  Saturday evening I did have to go to Heather's and have Brandi come over and give me my trigger shot.  It had to go in my hip so I wasn't sure about doing that one myself.  

This morning Shawn and I had our doctor appointment for our very first, and hopefully only, IUI.  Once again another successful doctor appointment!  While I was excited to do this IUI, my biggest fear going into this appointment was whether or not they would be able to cath me to do the insemination.  We went to see Dr. Gentry almost two and a half years ago to do artificial insemination and at that time, Dr. G wanted to do a hysterosalpingogram on me to make sure my tubes weren't blocked.  At that procedure, because of the fibroid's and my tilted uterus, he wasn't able to cath me then and said that since he couldn't cath me then, he wouldn't be able to cath me to do the insemination.  Thus began the journey of "the surgery from h3ll" and another fibroid surgery.  

We had to be at the doctor's office at 8:30 this morning.  When we got there, there was three other couples in there, so needless to say, I knew we wouldn't get called back right away.  When we did get called back, we had to sign a consent form allowing them to inject Shawn's semen into me.  We were given a number that we needed to use to verify everything when the actual procedure took place.  Shawn went and collected his specimen, and then we left while they washed it and had to come back in an hour.  We went and had breakfast at Hardee's and then drove around the Evansville State Hospital grounds.

Once back at the doctor's office, there was more waiting in the lobby and then we were called back for the insemination.  You can't tell in the picture, but I have a serious nervous belly!  

The nurses came in and Shawn had to verify his number against a dozen different papers, tubes, etc.  The insemination itself was went quick and smooth.  The worst part was the nurses trying to put the speculum in.  She tried the longer metal one first just because my uterus is tilted and my cervix hard to get too.  When that didn't work, she used the shorter plastic one and that worked great.  She was able to get the cath in really quick and easy, so that was awesome in my book.  She injected the semen and that was it.  Quick and easy.  After the insemination, I had to lay with my hips tilted for 20 minutes and then Shawn and I were free to go. 

My view for the next 20 minutes!  HAHA!

 I did have some mild cramping and have had some cramping and aches in my abdomen most of the day.  I know it's because of the insemination and ovulating.  We got our homework instructions, Thursday I start using the Progesterone inserts, and then it's just a waiting game.

Insurance has paid for the ultrasounds and blood tests for the IUI, but not the actual IUI itself.  I learned at the check out that if we paid cash, it would be $40 cheaper than paying with a debit card, so I had to run down to the ATM and get some greenbacks!

I can't say enough how much we appreciate everyone's prayers, thoughts, phone calls, and texts during this trying time for us. The last 7 years of TTC has definitely taken a toll on the both of us, both mentally, physically, and financially.  I'm so thankful that God has provided for us, he's a miracle working God!

Friday, August 8, 2014

2nd Follicle U/S = Blessings!

Today's doctor appointment went SO.MUCH.BETTER than I could of ever dreamed off!!  So many times we've left that office with such disappointment!  But today, oh, be still my heart!

Remember back to Wednesday this week at my follicle u/s appointment, I had one 10mm follicle (it needed to be about 18mm in order to trigger) and my estrogen blood draw level was 111 (for every 100 you have one mature follicle).  I had to take two more days of Follistim injections (plus order another 300 unit vial in case I needed some more tonight....more on that later!), and I started taking them in my thigh instead of my stomach. By injecting them in the thigh muscle, the body absorbs it better the nurse told me.  THANKS SO MUCH to my friend Brandi who is a nurse and has been giving me those injections, and to my friend Heather for letting me use her house as a meeting point and not charging me a facility charge!  HAHA!!  I'm fine with using the small needle for the stomach, but that bigger needle in the thigh seriously has me concerned.

Fast forward to this mornings follicle u/s appointment.  Today I had THREE follicles!!  THREE!  Are you kidding me? I've never had THREE.  I've been lucky to have one!!  Their sizes were 10mm, 12mm, & 14mm.  The nurse said I was really responding to the medicine in the thigh!  Since they aren't mature just yet (they grow about 2mm a day), I have to take another Follistim injection tonight in my thigh and again tomorrow morning in the thigh (I *might* try to attempt these myself).  Tomorrow night between 8:30 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. I will have to get my trigger shot in my hip (I'll ovulate 24-36 hours after getting it, which is why it has to be administered at a specific time).  The nurse already has that medicine mixed up for me.  I'm definitely going to have to call on a nurse friend for that one though.  Shawn said he could do them.  I said no way Jose!  We also have our "homework" plan too!  Monday morning we go in at 8:30 a.m. to begin the actual artificial insemination (IUI) process.  PRAY PEOPLE PRAY!!

I also left with a prescription for Progesterone that I'll have to use for 2 weeks after the insemination so I've been calling insurance and pharmacies to see if my insurance covers it and and where to get it.  And three pharmacies later, I found one that has a supply of them so after work I'll go get that prescription filled.

Remember how I mentioned earlier I needed to order another vial of the Follistim medicine, just in case I needed it for another day or two.  I thought for sure I had some leftover, or even a new vial of it, at home in the cabinet from 2 years ago when we were doing the injections, but neither Shawn nor I could find it.  The drug company called on Wednesday to verify the order and collect payment...almost $300.  Well that night I was at home and I had a light bulb go off....why don't you look in the actual injection pen that you used for the injections.  Sure enough, there it was, and it had about 300 units of medicine in it still!  And guess expires this month so it is STILL good!  I thought, oh Shawn is going to kill me!!  He didn't thankfully!  HAHA!!  I called the drug company first thing yesterday morning to see if I could refuse the package and the unopened package of medicine be returned to them and get a refund for the $300, but she said it couldn't since it has to be refrigerated.  I reminded her that it actually doesn't need to be refrigerated, and that they say that and put it on ice so that it isn't getting contaminated sitting in a hot warehouse or a hot delivery truck.  She said they still couldn't accept it back.  Well I tried.  So I'll use the medicine that expires this month first, and then use the new vial if needed.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Follicle u/s = good news & bad news

Shawn and I headed to Dr. Gentry's office for my follicle u/s this morning.  My appointment was at 8:30 a.m. I had my estrogen (E2) blood draw first and then the nurse called me back for my u/s.  Luckily for me there was only one nurse working on me, unlike last time when I had a nurse using the "Bob Barker's microphone from the Price is Right" digging in me to try and see my ovaries and another nurse standing over me pressing on my ovaries!

I'm going to be honest in saying that I went into the appointment already discouraged, defeated, and not feeling hopeful.  Probably comes from all the times when it's been like that.  It's hard to be excited for something that, in the past, has always been disappointment!  I did get a little bit of good news though.  I had one follicle that they could see.  Granted it wasn't mature enough yet, but it was there.  It was 10mm in size and the Dr. wants it to be at least around 18mm in size for it to be mature enough for me to get my trigger shot.  The nurse said she's going to get the results of my E2 blood draw and then talk to Dr. G to see what he recommends.  Chances are though that I'll continue taking the Follistim injections for a couple more nights and then go back into the office for another follicle u/s to see how much the follicle has grown.  When I ordered my medicine last time, I ordered it in three 300 unit vials so that I would have a little extra medicine in each vial versus just a little extra in one 900 unit vial.  That extra should buy me two more days at least.  And then they'll probably have to call me in a refill for another 300 unit vial.

I wrote the above paragraphs this morning.

I just got a call from Dr. G's office.  My estrogen level was 111, which was higher than the nurse expected it to be with the size of the follicle.  Normal is about 100 for each mature follicle.  Dr. G wants me to take another 150 units tonight and tomorrow night and inject them into my thigh.  Then we will go back on Friday for a repeat performance of today's activities.  I also had to order another 300 unit vial of Follistim just in case I needed to take more medicine on Friday and over the weekend.

Metro called shortly after I got off the phone with the nurse to confirm my order and get payment and my meds should be here tomorrow.

Fingers crossed!  Prayers appreciated!  Love to all!

Monday, August 4, 2014

My First Blog Book....and I love it!

I've known about blog books for a while now and have uploaded mine to print a couple different times, however the price to print one always detours me from actually printing it.  A friend from Facebook posted the other day that she had printed some with Blog2Print and it intrigued me again.  This time I took the plunge!  I made it (after much trial and error), then decided I wasn't sure about it. Despite numerous reviews out there about the few companies that make blog books, I thought for sure I could find something better.  I couldn't, not without spending a HUGE amount of time making one.  I decided to print the one from Blog2Print.  Then I accidentally deleted it and had to start over!  No biggie, by this point I was a seasoned pro at making them! 

I decided to print 2013 first and thought if I liked it, then I'll go back and print 2007-2012.  My 2013 book is 400 pages!  No joke!  I blogged that much last year.  Shew, it was an active year for us apparently!!  The book cost $160.  I told Shawn that since I didn't really scrapbook anymore and because I don't really print pictures anymore, that I really wanted to print this book.  I went to order it, and then second guessed whether or not I really wanted to spend the money on it.  I googled reviews of it, and talked to a couple blog friends that have them, and I was reassured that if I did print it, I would love it.

So I took the plunge.  I found a coupon code online to make the book cheaper, but then ended up upgrading the shipping so I could get it faster.  I'm SO, SO, SO glad I did.  Words can not describe how much I love this book!  It's a book of memories, cherished moments, funny stories, sad times, happy times, lots of pictures, and so much more!  I can't wait to start printing my 2007 through 2012 blog books!

As soon as I got the email that my book was being shipped, I started tracking it.  I had it shipped to my work so that it wouldn't sit at home on the porch if I was raining on the day it would get delivered.  However I accidentally put in my home zip code with my work address.  So Saturday the book was at the wrong post office.  I called and asked them what would happen to it and she said it would get rerouted to the address on the package.  This morning I saw that it was back at the downtown post office.  Instead of waiting for it to come in tomorrow's mail, I busted down there on my lunch today and hoped it would be there.  As you can guess, it was.

The packaging was all in tact and inside the box was a beautiful hardback bound book.  All of the pages are numbered and have the title of my blog on them.  I got to choose a photo for the front and back cover.  There is a dedication page I got to personalize.  And then there are table of contents pages.  The pages are a nice, sturdy quality, and the pictures are all in color.  The shipping time was alot sooner than quoted.  And their customer service was excellent.  Every time I had questions, I started a chat and got my answer promptly.  The only thing I dislike, is that there is widows/orphans - meaning I couldn't control what all is on each page.  There might be a description of the picture at the bottom of one page and the picture that goes with that description at the top of the next.