Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Muscular ventricular septal defect...

Those are the words I heard yesterday flow out of the mouth of the pediatric cardiologist following a 3 + hour ultrasound for echocardiogram's for the twins... (Fetal Echo is standard testing for IVF pregnancies) 

Before she even opened her mouth I knew the results were not normal... Between the scan taking a realllyyyy long time to get extra images on Baby A, and the little pad in her hand with a diagram of a heart, and the look on her face... I knew... 

She did a great job of making it sound really "normal" and non threatening, but Inside I was trying so hard not to lose it... I managed to make it to the car before tears came down... 

The good news is, it's a pretty common defect, and has a chance of closing on its own so little Josiah won't need surgery, but there are no garruntees of course. The other positive aspect is we know ahead of time, and can plan accordingly ... 

Of course our hope is that when I go back in 6 weeks for a follow up echo, it's closed and we can just move on... 

But man, it's hard to hear news like that... I just wanted to hear "they both look perfect"... I honestly expected there to be issues at anatomy scan, so once that came back great I let my guard down and just was taken back when there was an issue detected this time around....

So now we just keep praying... And believing that the Lord will heal... πŸ’™

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Anatomy scan...

Holy crap was I a bucket of nerves!!!! 

Yesterday I soent 3 hours getting scanned with the MFM office ...it was amazing to see the babies but also scary, as I didn't get the results until the very end... All that to say... 

They are doing great in there!!! MFM said they have no concerns!! Still a boy and a girl lol... Weighing 12 oz each... 

And my cervix was 3.8 which is pretty good for now! I'm feeling a bit better about everything now... I was so worried about major defects... Now we are really fully celebrating and in full swing with getting things ready for their arrival! 

Here's a couple of the 3D pics :)

This is Josiah ...



And here is Olivia... She was being difficult so we didn't get the best face shot lol 
So in love!!! πŸ’—πŸ’™


Saturday, March 12, 2016

We made it!

To 20 weeks! Wow!! 

I'm sitting here in total awe at this journey we have been on... It has NOT been easy... The last 5 years have been without a doubt very hard... And even the last 20 weeks...

I've been hospitalized a few times between kidney infections, the flu, strange high blood pressure etc... The anxiety has been very intense... But every  second has been worth it 100%... 

We have the "big" anatomy scan on Monday... I know things are most likely fine, but I still worry... Also kind of worried my already shorter than it should be cervix will be shorter... But today, no matter what Monday brings, is still a victory ... A miracle.... 

I'm so incredibly thankful for our donors who chose LIFE for their remaining embryos, so we could have a chance to complete our family in a unique way, and get the healing redemption of carrying and giving birth again after so so so many losses...

I'm thankful for every cramp, pain, bout of reflux, sickness, bladder leak... Well , you get the point... I'm thankful to be here... So many nights I tried to grapple with the thought of never getting to experience this again... Forcing myself to try and let go of a dream that didn't seem to be possible... And now, I'm sitting here in tears (of joy) feeling these precious babies move ... 

As far as them not being genetically ours... Honestly I hardly think about it...my step daughter isn't "mine" and I didn't even get to bond with her at birth etc, but I still love her like she is 100% mine... I'll admit, the suspense as to what  they will look like is pretty exciting!  But never once have we ever felt reserved emotionally because they are not genetically ours... In fact both my husband and I seem to be bonding faster this time around simply because the journey was so hard just to get here!  We appreciate the gift of life more than ever before and cherish each moment... 

I still can't believe we are over half way done baking these two babies! I cannot wait to hold them in my arms...

I'll update after our scan on Monday with some new pics of the littles ...

Prayers are appreciated in regards to my body continuing to do what it needs to (keep  them in as long as possible) ...

Saturday, February 13, 2016

The verdict is...

So we went for a private scan today to see the little ones and find out genders ... 

It was such a great experience and soooooo worth the 60 bucks! Lol....

The results.... 

Baby A is... 

And baby B is.... 


We could not be happier!!!

Still settling on names but we are close to  making some final decisions πŸ˜†

This is starting to really feel REAL!




Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Each week is monumental... So thankful

It's hard to believe I am just shy of 15 weeks. I honestly never thought we would have made it this far after the last few years and the heart break and chaos... 

But alas... Here I am... Both babies growing strong! Not just one, but TWO! (Thank you God!) 

My heart is nothing but filled with gratitude and love... I am so thankful for these little babies, who are now about the size of a lemon (a bit bigger now) ... I pray for them each day and praise God for sending these precious babies to us...They are absolute gifts..,

But unfortunately this pregnancy has not been 100% easy... Even as early as I am, I've already spent a week hospitalized, do to insane crazy blood pressure (which developed out of nowhere - I've always had low blood pressure) so now I'm on medication for that... My thyroid has decided to go insanely crazy too... And now I'm having teeth issues on a previously root canal crowned tooth requiring pain meds and heavy antibiotics (which of course I don't want to take but I have to) ... But everything that pops up I just keep telling myself it's going to be worth it in the end... No matter what I'm dealing with now I absolutely would go through it again for these little ones... They are worth every single little thing ...

Especially when I look at my growing Belly... I love it!!! I can't wait to be huge and uncomfy... A luxury when it comes to multiple pregnancies. And by that I mean, if you get far enough along to feel that way with no pre term labor etc, it's a blessing! Hoping for that for us, considering we already are contending with high blood pressure etc...

Here's a peek at the belly :) 


(11 weeks vs 13/14 weeks) 


In other news... We are paying for a private scan this weekend- hoping to get a preliminary guess on genders... They also give you a sneak peek at the 4D HD ultrasound! Can't wait! The last time we saw them at the NT scan, they looked so cute!! They look like little babies now... And it's been a few weeks since then, so I'm sure they look even cuter! ...

Here's a peek at them from NT- 

Hopefully we have some better images after the private scan. It's only 60 bucks... Can't beat it really... And if they can't tell the gender with certainty they will bring you back for free for another scan - of course I'm not going to buy anything until everything is confirmed at the anatomy scan at 19 weeks... But it is fun to start looking and thinking of names... And since my husband can't make it to every appointment ( going every 1 to 2 weeks right now because of the complications) it will be neat for him to be able to look at them a Little more in depth... I do get a scan every time I go to the doctors office but it is a very very low resolution ultrasound, and they simply do it just to check the heartbeats instead of using a Doppler. 
 
I however love my Doppler... Im easily able to distinguish between
 the two heart beats, and the peace of mind it gives me is absolutely priceless. You go through a lot of anxiety after many pregnancy losses, and since we've had a second trimester loss in the past, it gets increasingly difficult around these weeks... But I have to say I am feeling much much better...I have even started to feel light movement which is early, but there are two of them in there... Lol 

Anxiety is so much better now... I'm starting to really accept this pregnancy and abandon my fears... I am finally understanding the reality of having TWO in there... It seemed so surreal for so long ... Honestly the full reality won't set in till I am holding them I don't think... But that's typical with even a singleton when you have endured infertility and loss. 

It's strange... Sitting in the OB office yesterday, I still had some pangs of emotion surrounding loss/infertility... Wondering what it must feel like to be blissfully ignorant of all that can happen... I also scanned the room to see if there was anyone sitting there trying not to "see" all of us pregnant people... My heart absolutely aches for anybody who has to be in that position... I will never forget... 

But I have to say it is hard to balance The way that I cope, with being sensitive to others... I swore before I got pregnant , I wouldn't be one of those  posters on social media who updates about their pregnancy etc.... And had we not goine to embryo adoption I probably would be a lot more scaled back. But because so many people have been supportive through this journey with embryo adoption, and quite frankly very fascinated, i've been keeping everyone up-to-date because I get asked so frequently... And also admittedly, it really helps me cope... Cherishing every single moment, taking lots of pictures, etc... That seems to be therapeutic for me, vs  keeping everything to myself, and withholding my emotion. But my heart definitely aches for those who are still struggling... There are a few ladies who would have been pregnant with me had things been different for them, and I pray for them every day because I know what it's like to be on that side... :::sigh::: it's not that I forget, but I have to do what I have to do to survive through this... And for me, that means logging every single thing and living in each moment with pier joy... That means lots of pictures and updates... It means celebrating every single day and every single week... Because it really is monumental...and these babies really are "special snowflakes" lol...

Anyway ...just thought I'd update for you all :) 

We are still here...still going strong! One day at a time, we are getting closer, and closed to holding these precious babies!!!  


Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Graduation day

O9 weeks and 4 days... I had my final scan with the RE... 

Both babies are measuring perfect with heartbeats at 188. They were moving and kicking around in there!! It was awesome!! 

From here on out- I'm to see the OB... I got all my records etc ... Next appt is Jan 11th- then NT scan Jan 18th!! 

I'm so blessed and thankful to be here!!!

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Wow...we have made it to 9 weeks!

I'm so thankful to be here... 9 weeks today... 

When I wrote my last entry it felt like I would never get "here"... It feels rather surreal. 

I found both babies heartbeats on the Doppler this morning. Baby B is much higher and to the left and baby A is tucked down to the right under my pubic bone. It's so wonderful to be able to wake up and hear them - πŸ’— 

I gotuesdsy for my last scan for the RE's -then I won't see the little ones again till the NT scan-with MFM - can't wait for that! They will look so Cute!!! More like babies and not beans. 

I'm feeling... Good- no real symptoms other than some fatigue, mood swings and hunger. I am def expanding in the midsection though. 

I am so thankful for this opportunity - without the gift of embryo donation/adoption I wouldn't be here ...

I am so in love with these snowflake babies πŸ’™πŸ’š

Saturday, December 12, 2015

The anxiety... I almost forgot how hard this was...


When we lost Hannah in 2008, I barely had enough time to grieve before we were pregnant again with Kaitlyn my youngest... I  remember being so excited at first... Then, BAM.... Anxiety... It was overwhelming and debilitating. The surge of bittersweet emotions was too much to articulate... I barely survived. I remember the relief after her birth... It was immense... And almost instantly I had forgotten about the anxiety...

Over the last five years I've been so consumed with just getting to the point of even having a positive pregnancy test, seeing a heart beat, or at the very least just having good betas, that I forgot how hard it is week to week after that... The panic and worry from appointment to appointment ... You forget how hard it is to survive...  Then you feel guilty because you should be enjoying every second of this, after all the begging, pleading, and crying you did praying to just get  "here"... 

I find myself barely existing again... Forcing myself to try and accept that this is different some how... Trying to put on the brave face for everyone else... Faking a smile and telling everyone I feel great, so I don't have to tell them how incredibly scared I am... 

I remember the day of transfer, telling myself it would be different this time... That I wouldn't allow myself to feel this way... How incredibly naΓ―ve... Like I had any control over this at all?! It's not like I haven't been through this before... And yet somehow I was able to convince myself I wouldn't struggle as much this time... Of course things are definitely different with twins ...More risks... More possibilities... 

At this point I'm just counting down the moments to each appointment and trying to breathe... 

And don't get me wrong I am so incredibly blessed to even be feeling this way... I remember the intense heart ache, when I would give anything to have this kind of anxiety, because at least there would be a little bit of hope... But it's hard... And overwhelming... And crippling ... And very very hard to explain to those who don't understand...

3 more days until the next scan... 

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Overjoyed!!

We had another scan today. The doctors schedule had changed so they moved my ultrasound up ...

I was so nervous... This was kind of a "big" one considering we hoped to see heartbeats... 

And ... We did!!! Two heartbeats!!! Babies are measuring great!!! Omg! We are having twins!!!! 


Friday, December 4, 2015

One more step closer...

I finally made it past the furthest I have been in the last five years... Today is 5w6d!! 

It's kind of surreal actually.... So many emotions and anxieties... I really can't properly articulate it right now...

We had an early scan yesterday at 5w5d... It actually went good!!! 

In the past when I even made it to ultrasound I always measured a week behind... Or it was tubal etc... 

I'm pleased to say things are measuring. Good!!! And.... There's two!!!


I go back next Thursday for a repeat and hopefully there are heart beats for both!! :) 

Monday, November 23, 2015

Beta #2 ...

Came in at 226!! 😁😁😁

Feeling like this is real!!!

Friday, November 20, 2015

Beta #1

Is...,

74!

I'm not even eight days past transfer until this afternoon!!

Seem like a really good start!!! 

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Holy progression Batman!!


So I've been holding off on taking my other first response test... I wanted it to be a little bit closer to the 48 hours so that you could see a difference... This was about six hours shy of 48 hours apart... And oh my...

The top test was taken at around 2 PM on five days post transfer- bottom test was taken at 8:30 AM this morning, not even technically seven days past transfer....

Beta will be tomorrow.., but my clinic doesn't get results until the second drawl which is Monday... Going to be a long weekend!!! 😁😁😁

But I'm feeling really good about things!! 

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Yay!!!!

It worked!!!

5 days past 5 day transfer...

Tests taken with no hold...


Friday, November 13, 2015

I am now PUPO!!!!


Sorry for the lack of updates I was so busy updating everybody on Facebook and on my fertility friend groups... also the wife I was kind of crappy at the hotel so it was hard for me to do a lot of things with uploading pictures etc.... 

The trip was amazing!!! Omg... I'll have to do a separate post just for the pictures... But here's one...



We got into Reno the evening of the 11th... Got a bite to eat and gambled a little bit...lol... We didn't win anything but we didn't lose much either. Then hit the sack. I had a really hard time sleeping... I have been up at 2 o'clock that morning and was up at 2 o'clock on day of transfer too... 

Thursday was just a huge ball of emotions... We tried to keep ourselves busy and round around the Peppermill, ate some amazing food at the island buffet, and by the time we were sorted with getting souvenirs for the family, it was time to head back to the hotel and start filling my bladder! 

I got to the clinic about 1:30 PM... I think I drink a bit too much water... Kept having to release a little bit so that I didn't Per my pants!! Lol!! 



Finally around 2:15 , dr. came in...

Out of the 13 day three blastocysts we had, only three made it to day  five. All the others arrested. We transferred at the very to best, One was almost fully hatched and the other one looks like it was getting ready to. The third one was expanded and was going to be frozen, that will be put back with the other two day fives that we left on ice. 

Here are the two we put in!! 






So as of yesterday, I am PUPO!!!

Now we pray... And wait.... 





Friday, October 30, 2015

Lining update-

Has my second scan today... 

Lining was 9mm , ovaries quiet!! Yay!! 

Transfer officially scheduled for 2pm November 12!!! 

I'm so excited!! After everything we have been through... this might actually work!!! 

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Getting close!!

16 days until transfer day!!!!

I do my 3rd estradiol valerate injection today, and have my lining check Thursday.
Things are moving along nicely, and we are getting so excited!!!

:)

Monday, October 12, 2015

Monday, October 5, 2015

Paid in full!

Cycle fees are paid! Woohoo! That's a great feeling! :) 

I cannot wait for November!!!

 We have told all of our immediate family, and close friends. Everyone is getting so excited!! Nothing but support from everyone we have told... Many people are hoping for twins! I admittedly am as well... πŸ’— 

Our teens want to come with us to transfer... Lol... Def not! But it's so sweet to see them involved, excited and wanting to get educated. My oldest said even if she has NO infertility issues, she still wants to adopt embryos in the future... So sweet!! πŸ’— 
Hopefully this thanksgiving we have a little extra be be thankful for!' 😁 

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Sigh of relief

Of course this was mostly a formality, but nonetheless I was a little bit nervous... 

We had to have a psychological evaluation done in order to proceed with the embryo donation/adoption process. It is something that my clinic requires when using third-party reproduction. 

I went Thursday with my husband,  we met a lovely lady who specializes in these sorts of evaluations. I'm not sure why I was really even nervous... I guess it was just one of those things. I mean there was a chance she could say that we were not ready for this... I mean what if she just didn't like us? Of course in hindsight those worries seem silly. But hindsight is always 2020 isn't? 

The meeting started and we began to just share with her a little bit about who we are as a couple and as a family. She asked a lot of very deep and probing questions, especially after learning about all of my consecutive losses. It felt good to be able to answer her with assurance about like girls since all of that .

You see I have done a lot of growing in the last year and a half to two years since we really stopped with treatments. I went through about a year of intense grief where I was extremely better and angry(i'm sure you could see it in every post).. I wasn't thankful for what I had in my life and I was not sure that I would ever feel that way again... It's not because I didn't see the blessings that I had, it was because the grief overshadowed everything so very much.... It was all consuming and so very heavy...  Then over the last year and a half , I had a crazy health scare, it's was a result of some of the immune medications that I was taking. There was a period of time where they thought I might've had lymphoma... That really redirected my entire frame of mind. Suddenly everything had so much value... And at the end of the day I didn't care whether we had another baby or not, I was happy to be alive. I was happy with my family and everything around me ...Then about six months after that I begin the journey to really start dealing with at the deep grief and hurt and envy and jealousy... It was not easy to see the ugliness ... But I sucked it up and decided I needed to deal with this. 

And then... embryo adoption fell in our lap...(well actually we almost did IVF with donor sperm but I had absolutely no peace about it- I kept going back to embryo adoption) 

All that to say, it felt good being able to tell her all the things that I went through in the process that it took to get me where I am today. It took a lot of tears and sitting on my good friends couch pouring out my heart, and  listening to some very hard advice. I felt like it was an accomplishment to be able to sit there and fully articulate everything we went through and how I/we got on the other side of it, emotionally. 

Then we moved on to some other very difficult questions as to how we would deal with questions from strangers and exactly how are going to deal with telling the child about their origins. You see some people decide that they just don't even want to tell the children that they are not genetically theirs... I couldn't imagine being untruthful... Or hiding the story that is so very precious... Our snowflake babies story is going to be so incredibly special, it would be a tragedy to try and lie about it. 

The counselor explained that because we have a blended family already we have already dealt with some of those strange questions that come from others, and The emotional aspect of having children that are already not genetically ours together. Not that it's ever been an emotional strain on us ever... For us genetics just don't matter.  She also validated how incredibly healing it would be for me to have a pregnancy go to term in my own body. Which is nice to have somebody else validate those feelings. 

At the end of the meeting we asked her if there was anything we should be concerned about or if there was anything she was concerned about in regards to us, decision to adopt embryos and bring one into the world. I'm pleased to say she said "you know I rarely ever say this but I actually have no concerns whatsoever"... We walked away feeling so excited and very very happy! Not  Just because we got the stamp of approval, but also because she saw in us all of the things that we bring to the table as parents, even with limited information she could see how incredibly important it was for me to have a pregnancy go to term even if it wasn't genetically mine... She could see how important this is to us... She realized that this wasn't just a means to an end, but something we really feel like we are being called to. 


I certainly don't believe God brought any of the last 4 1/2 years on me for A reason , but I do believe he works all things together for the good, and in this instance he led us to embryo adoption/donation... If I hadn't have gone through everything that we did in the last few years, my heart would have never been ready to do something like this... 

And at the end of the day this Isn't  just us having another child, we are being blessed with an opportunity to give a child a life that it otherwise wouldn't have... A precious precious baby that was chosen by God, Who could be the next Mother Teresa or the next president... I am ever grateful for the donors who decided to put up their much wanted and much love to embryos... Their gift is one of the most amazing things I've ever experienced in my life. And while we don't know whether or not this is going to work, we are walking into this with hope and faith. 


I don't think I've ever felt this much peace in my entire life and especially not in the last 4 1/2 to 5 years... It's like I can breeze and I can see clearly. I'm not anxious or worried about the outcome... I'm just so thankful to have the opportunity at all. 

Saturday, September 26, 2015

We have a date!

Everything is set for a transfer on November 12!! I'm on the pill right now, as soon as I'm done with this pack and a half shows I go for my baseline and then I start meds!! 

This is actually going to happen!! 

Monday, September 14, 2015

Getting closer!

The move went well... Still trying to unpack and get into a new routine. Only moved 2 miles away but it feels like my whole world has been flipped upside down. 

My medication came in the other day... 

I really wish I was starting my injections this month! But of course one thing after another has come up and our regular finances have not been able to facilitate putting down the rest of the money for our FET. I'm really hoping the check I am waiting for comes sooner rather than later so that we can do a late October early November transfer. 

It seems so close but still so far away... 

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

We adopted!!

We "adopted" this week...

A batch of embryos!!

We decided earlier this year to look into embryo donation/adoption.... Instantly, we felt that was the "right" decision for us... However, we decided to look into ALL other options again before we went forward.... We ALMOST did IVF with donor sperm (which would also bypass the HLA issues) but after further discussion with my husband we BOTH felt donor embryo/embryo adoption was the best possible option for us to result in a take home baby. And, after further discussion with Dr. Braverman (our old Reproductive immunologist) he agreed that it was the choice that offered the most chance of success...

After all of that, we had to decide on which clinic/program we wanted to use. For those who do not know (which will be a vast majority of you), you can obtain donated embryos through various methods. There are agencies, like Miracles waiting who will help match you with a donating family, based on yours and their search preferences. Then there are self matching sites like the NRFA, where you can add a profile and do your own matching, as well as various online group sites that offer the ability to privately match. Then there are the clinics who use  anonymous donated embryos (meaning you wont ever meet to contact the donating parents) and you use that clinic for the transfer etc... There is ALSO what they call double donor embryos, where they use donated sperm and eggs to make a embryo for you.

We chose to use a anonymous clinic program. I was between my local clinic and one in NV... After some dealing with the local clinic, we decided to use the one in Nevada, and I am SO glad we did!! They are awesome, and you get way more for your money! So after choose the clinic, we had to become "patients"  VIA a phone consult. After that we were given the list of embryos, and got to choose. After narrowing down our choices to 3, we had a follow up phone consult to go over each batch and decide on one.... And we did!!!  Then it was sign and notarize some forms and now...

I'm pleased to announce we are now the proud parents of a batch of snowflakes!!!!

We are hoping to cycle in October!! We will be transferring two 5 day embryos and then, praying like crazy!!!

FINALLY, after nearly 5 years, we have a viable, feasible option that offers a decent chance at a take home baby!! SO excited for this fall!!