Sunday, April 30, 2006

Our Drugs and Needles

Well, here it is. All of our stuff (although we will get a second batch before the end of the cycle but this is enough for the first week or so!)

Yellow container - for used needles, two white boxes - Gonal F Pens for daily shots, white box with red - Buserelin twice daily shots. The rest of the stuff is just needles and syringes and anti bacterial wipes and a sperm container! I still think I get the hardest job :-)

I finished the pill today - am very glad to have taken my last one as I have had a low grade headache for about two weeks. But then I guess I'll be missing my low grade headache when the shots really kick in!

Saturday, April 29, 2006

I don't believe in horoscopes...

But, was happy to see this in this months Australian Woman's Weekly (which must be true as they often have my idol, Olivia, on the cover!)

The horoscope zone that rules children, babies, substitute children (such as favourite pets) and also your own inner child is busy in May. Don't be surprised if you find yourself attached to a son or daughter, or even someone else's child, as this boy or girl will be quite dependent on you.

I'm happy to take whatever vibes the cosmos might bring me!


Friday, April 28, 2006

We have our drugs!

Now it really does all seem very real. We went to the clinic today and met with our nurse, who is lovely - she has a good sense of humour which helps as I tend to make off colour jokes when I get nervous!

She had our pack of drugs and needles and information sheets all ready for us (as my mate at work says, given the cost it should have been a leather bag!), and we talked our way through what to do when, and how. Then it was the moment of truth - giving myself the first "practice" injection. Honestly, the anticipation of it was worse than actually doing it - you inject into the tummy anywhere below the belly button, and the needles are very fine and short so it's not too bad.

Of course, that's just one injection and I didn't actually push the plunger down, whereas it will be two a day to start with, then three a day for a while! But at least I know now I can do it. And it might even be easier without an audience! Having Rupert there with me was great as he now knows everything as well as I do, and he also knows how to do the shots and prepare the medication so if I do feel a bit fragile one day he can take over.

I did feel a bit shaky afterwards and quite emotional - it has been such a long build up and finally it is all happening. So that's good, but scary as well! So...that's it for now. I finish taking the pill on Sunday, and then first injection is 6am Wednesday 3rd May.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Words of Wisdom

I arrived at work this morning to find a page photocopied from a book called "A Pennine Journey" written by Wainwright in 1938 which someone had left on my desk overnight.

I am going to type it out here because I think, no matter what challenges you are facing, this is really good stuff.

Anticipation is often more pleasurable than realisation; recollection is the sweetest of all and the most enduring. The mentality which urges you never to anticipate, never to count your chickens before they are hatched, is wrong all to blazes. Let your anticipation run riot, plan and dream of things far above your grasp, reach after them in your imagination even when reality is receding, think about them always. Plan new achievements, and set about achieving them. Failure and disappointment simply don't matter; go ahead with your dreaming, let your enthusiasm run away with you. You were made to rise and soar, and come down to earth with a bump, and rise and soar again. If you accomplish nothing else, you'll have kept the rot and the rust away. Let me warn you: it's the practical people who stay rooted on the earth, who make the money. But it's the dreamers who touch the stars. Which is the success you plan? Are you to 'play safe" for the rest of your life, or are you to adventure? You must make a choice, and make it early; and having made it you must abide by it.

This author is right. I want to rise and soar, and if there is a bump down to earth at the end of it, then at least I will have risen and soared first!


Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Just a week to go...

Starting to get a little nervous now - been reading a lot about what to expect and have probably slightly terrified myself! This Friday we go see the nurse and get taught the injections and given the drugs to take home, and then next Wednesday we start the injections themselves.

An infertility newsgroup I post to has been helpful in some ways as there are other women going through IVF - a couple are slightly ahead of me. Both of them have now had their embryo transfers and are waiting the two weeks to see if they are pregnant. It's a painful wait for them, and a little for me - for some reason I think if they succeed I will too! Silly I know as we are all different and having IVF because of different reasons for the infertility. However, it's a good resource of women who have been through this and other treatments, and they definately seem to know their stuff!

I'll think we'll just be really glad to get on with it next week, and at the same time am answering all social invitations with a cautious "I'll see how I feel". I'm a little nervous of some of the side effects of the drugs, so am planning as relaxing and stressfree a time as possible!

More on Friday after our appointment!

Paula (and Rupes)

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

We have our dates

The nurse called last week and ran through all the important dates with me - and we got home from work today to find the planning sheet in the mail. Made it seem quite real! So, here are some of those dates and what happens on them:

28th April - meeting with the nurse to learn how to inject myself, mix the drugs, and bring the drugs home.
30th April - stop taking the contraceptive pill (used to hold the body in a state of readiness)
3rd May - first day of injections (two injections daily of Buserelin)
5th May - addition of a daily injection of Gonal F
8th May - first blood test to check estrogen levels
10th May - First scan to check follicle growth
15th May - All going well, expected week of egg collection (actual date to be decided following tests and scans to check follicle development).

It's starting to feel quite close now - only 2 weeks till the first injections!

Monday, April 17, 2006

Rupert and I in Annapolis with the statue of Alex Haley (writer of the book Roots). On this day we were waiting on a phone call to let us know if we could go home. We were determined to enjoy the pretty day, but at the time we were both really upset that all of our plans were now in limbo and we didn't know when we would get home. Not to mention all the blood tests!!

History up till now...

This blog is written mainly to be shared with family, friends and workmates as a way of keeping you updated in our soon to begin IVF cycle. Please feel free to post any comments or questions in reply.

As most of you know, in December 2004 while on holiday in Maryland, our much hoped for pregnancy ended. This pregnancy had come as a surprise as we had been trying for a long time, and we were so very excited about it - however, our hopes were dashed when the pregnancy was found to be ectopic (growing outside the womb). I was given a chemotherapy drug to dissolve the pregnancy before it could burst the tube and do any major damage. A week later the hospital let me fly home.

As you can imagine, and know, it was a devastating time. To be in such emotional pain on the other side of the world, so far from home - but so well cared for by Kelly and Lori who truly became part of our family at that time. To have the uncertainty of changing plans as we weren't allowed to fly for a week until the hormone levels dropped. To have the unpleasant task of phoning my boss (who didn't know I was pregnant) and explaining why I would be a week late back to work. In all things by all people involved we were shown nothing but kindness.

To those who supported us then - you are supporting us now. And we appreciate it so very much.

So...we tried for another year before we went to see our GP and asked for help. A battery of tests later, we were sent to a well known medical group here in NZ where we saw a specialist. He decided that the best thing to do would be surgery to check my insides (laparoscopy and hysteroscopy) - so that was booked for February 2006. It wasn't a comfortable recovery by any means, but it did feel good to finally have some concrete answers - one tube was leaking badly, the other was fine. They weren't sure if the damaged tube was caused by the ectopic pregnancy, or if the tube was damaged prior to that and actually caused the loss of the pregnancy. There was also no endeometriosis which had been a concern.

However the tubal damage happened, we now had only a 1 - 2 % chance of a successful pregnancy and live birth if we continued trying naturally. So in March 2006 we made the decision to try for IVF, which would give us a 30% chance if two to three embryos were implanted.

This journal is our way of sharing the process we are going to go through with those we love. Hopefully, we will be updating this page regularly, so feel free to check back!


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