Thursday, June 27, 2013

A Wonderful Post from Another Blogger

This post is from a blogger that I just recently started following. She has a little girl thanks to IVF. She also had two miscarriages before IVF. Her story is really sweet and beautiful.

If you have some time you should read this post she wrote yesterday! It made my heart and face smile.

I hope some day I get to be on this side of the journey with her. I am so thankful for the blogger community, it has been the greatest coping tool for me in the last 6 months. I have encountered so many great women. I love reading all their stories and feel such a strong connection with them.

I pray everyday for all couples on the same journey as we are! I pray that God makes their empty arms full of life!

Friday, June 21, 2013

Love At First Sight

I was so happy when I got home and checked the mail yesterday!! There was an envelope from Dr. Silber's office. I knew what was inside, a picture of our babies!!! I tried to stay calm as I was trying to get the darn envelope open, I knew I had to be careful and not damage the work of art enclosed. :)

Here they are in all their glory, wonder and beauty!!

I am in LOVE!
Thank You God for these precious tiny miracles! Thank You for giving others the science and knowledge to create these microscopic blessings! They each have 23 chromosomes from mommy and 23 from daddy. Their gender is already determined too, but only God knows that right now! :)
I got to thinking last night as I was looking at this photo. How neat is it that someday we may get to show our baby(ies) this photo and tell them the story of them? And how so many people prayed and prayed for them before they were even in mommy's belly. And how mommy and daddy knew them and loved them so much, even when they were smaller than the size of the period at the end of this sentence. This is a gift. Not many people get to see their babies at 3 days old! :)

In other news, my sister's baby shower is tomorrow! I am so excited! Kolette and I have lots of work to do, making everything pretty and yummy!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013


So we have been doing a lot of thinking over the past two nights, more so last night. I think Monday night and all day yesterday I was on a high and that was affecting my critical thinking. I just kept thinking okay everything went so well, let's do a transfer! But then logical Kandie kicked in. I called and talked to Joan and asked a few questions. I talked to Ryan and we laid it all out, the pros and cons. After talking and thinking we decided the best option would be to do another retrieval. After all this is what Dr. Silber suggested from the beginning. He is the expert. He is the one who sees patients in our situation all the time. He knows what works and what is best. I have had full confidence in him since the day we met and I still do.

Here's the facts:

Pros of a 2nd Retrieval:
  • Each embryo has approximately a 25% chance of implanting and resulting in pregnancy
  • If we put in two at a time, the chance of pregnancy then becomes 50%
  • If you do the math, that means on average 1 in 4 embryos make it
  • We only have 4, even though we are thrilled with that number and the possibility of 4 babies, there is also a possibility that all 4 will not make it, then we would be back a square one
  • I think it would be harder on us to move a step back, in other words if we did 2 transfers and both were unsuccessful it would be emotionally and physically exhausting to start over
  • If we were to go ahead with a transfer now we know we only have 2 chances
  • If we do another retrieval we will have more than 2 chances (if everything goes well)
  • It would be less stressful going in to a transfer knowing that you have more than two shots at it
  • What's two more months of my life at this point!
  • My eggs are the youngest and best they will be right now. If I was to get pregnant with one of the four embryos and then wanted another baby later that would put my eggs being 2 plus years older before I could do another retrieval. The quality will be less and so will the quantity.
Pros of Going Ahead with a Transfer:

  • Ryan wouldn't have to be off several days of work right at the beginning of the school year (except for the transfer day)
  • I wouldn't have to be off a whole week plus, just 2 - 3 days at the most (I am completely out of vacation hours but luckily I have a boss and employer who are okay with me taking unpaid leave)
  • If I did a transfer it would probably be at the end of September beginning of October and if I was to get pregnant I would be due next Summer, which would be convenient for a teacher's wife
  • It would be less money, less travel, lodging, dining, etc. (Honest I am not worried about money, but it would be less money.)
  • I am not sure yet when insurance will quit paying. I did fail to mention in my post about insurance that the lifetime limit for fertility coverage is $15,000. I know that there is a good possiblity of going over this amount with two retrievals plus medication for transfers. But that's okay too. I am willing to spend all of my savings for a miracle! For the first retrieval we were out of pocket my deductible plus Dr. Silber's fee of $5,000
  • The fee for the second retrieval is $4,000. (This is discounted $1,000 if you do back-to-back retrievals.) I am not sure if any or how much of the $5,000 or $4,000 that I will get back. Dr. Silber does not participate in any insurance networks. For out-of-network my insurance has an a seperate $6,000 deductible not counting my already met deductible of $3000. I would have met most of this with the first check of $5,000.
  • If I am looking at out of network coverage right, then I should get back 80% of $3,000 of the $4,000 as long as the claim is accepted. I am still not sure that it will be.
  • I should also mention that these fees, the $5,000 & $4,000, each include one transfer and storage of embryos for a year. The only cost we should incur at transfer would be for medications.
  • In other words, if it is going to take more than one retrieval for us to have our children it would be best to get it in this year since the in-network deductible is met and hopefully the out-of-network deductible will be too!  
So that's it! A lot of info, a hard decision! But we have to make the choice that we are most comfortable with and I feel like this is it.

As for now, I should get my period in the next 5 to 10 days. I won't do or take anything from the start of this period to the next one (which should fall at the end of July). After I get my period in July we will know a target date. It will be either the last week of August or the first week of September. All medications will be the same. I will start birth control, Clomid and Follistim shots after my July period and we will go from there!

Now I have work to do figuring out more insurance info! One step at a time!

P.S. I love my husband so much! He is always so calm, collected, upbeat and supportive. I really believe I could not have made it this far if I was married to anyone else! God handpicked him for me! The first thing he said to me Monday night when I hung up with Joan was "Good job baby, I am so proud of you! I told you you had good eggs!" That meant the world to me, for him to acknowledge my biggest achievement in life thus far! (I know there are bigger ones to come!)

Monday, June 17, 2013

The Best Day of My Life!

Just a quick post because I am too emotional to write too much. 

Joan called and said out of the 5 eggs, 4 were mature enough to fertilize. She said that all 4 fertilize and froze! I could not believe my ears! She said "you know you had one of those cycle that doesn't happen very often." She was so happy for us. I asked how many cells they were and she said 3 were 8 celled and 1 was 7 celled but that it looked really good! 

Thank you God! You have been so good to me! Thank you friends and family who sent up countless prayers! 

She asked what we wanted to do next, another retrieval or a transfer. She said that I just needed to call her when we decided. I will have to think long and hard. 

But right now we are gonna go eat some pizza to celebrate! Celebrating that we now have 4 babies!! 


I decided to wait! I called first thing this morning to leave a message for Joan to call after 4:00 and instructed Ryan to be home by then! I knew that if I didn't call first and she called me that I might give in to the temptation or would tell her to call back and be analyzing how her voice sounded all day. Was she upbeat or was she sympathetic??  I just really think this moment should be shared by the both of us! Whether we have 5 or 1 baby(ies) growing strong, I want us to be there together to hear about them! I am not willing to let myself believe that there will be less than 1!

Yes I am nervous, yes this day is going to drag on! I don't know what to expect. Everyone keeps telling me it is going to be good news, I hope so! I have a number that has been in my head since Friday morning, before I even spoke to the doctor. We will see if my intuition is right!? I will be ok if it is more than that number but I will be ok no matter what....

Friday, June 14, 2013


We are home! I am doing well. I am a little light headed and have a bad headache but other than that not too bad. I am so happy to be at home in my recliner. Ha.

I am so glad we got to come home today instead of tomorrow! 

So what do you all think???... Should I tell my coordinator to call after work so I can be with Ryan or should I just bite the bullet and let her tell me fist thing??? This is what I will be thinking about all weekend! If it's disappointing news I want/need to be with Ryan but then also I am so anxious and that will just be that much longer to wait... Feel free to comment! I know y'all are reading! :) I have come this far... everything has been so smooth the last two weeks that it makes me nervous if I let myself think.

Side positive note: Ryan told me this morning before we left for the hospital that he had a dream we had twins, one boy, one girl. Then as we were waiting on the doctors to come in my room to send me back I was flipping through the tv channels and came along a show about twins on TLC. They were newborn, tiny. I kept flipping and low and behold I came across some channel for new moms. There was a woman breast feeding twins (one on each breast)!! (They were teaching the various techniques). Anyway as we were eating lunch (finally), Ryan's mom called and said she had to tell me something before she forgot again. She said that Ryan's sister had called a couple days ago telling her that she had a dream I was pregnant and nobody told her. When she ran into me and asked I told her I was pregnant with twins, a boy and girl!! 

So do you all believe in signs?! I do, I think God gives us signs sometimes. Maybe for hope, encouragement or guidance. Not saying that we will have twins but these little things are what keeps my hope alive! And I am thankful for them! 

Funny thing about another sign... The very first thing I bought "baby related" was after about two months of trying (approximately two years ago). It was a "My First Cardinals Tee" baby shirt. There it was staring me in the face the whole time! It even says "St. Louis" on it. I have looked at the thing countless times. I thought about giving it to a handful of moms that got pregnant in those two years but something inside of me couldn't let it go. I have held it and cried. I have laid it out so I would see it everyday to stuff it away a few days later. Granted I know it's not too much of a coincident since Ryan and I are such big fans. But really when you think about it, it is the only clothing item I have bought for our future baby.  

Here it is, isn't it cute?!?

Well there was one other clothing item, the red Tiny Toms I bought in November when I found out I was pregnant. I was going to use them for a Christmas card announcing our pregnancy. I miscarried before I got them in the mail. When I came home and they were sitting on the steps I immediately stuffed them under my bed. I didn't even open the UPS box they came in. Ha, they could be pink or glittery for all I know! My due date for that Angel is July 26th! Wow! 

Anyway I know I will open them someday. Maybe the day I find out I am pregnant. Although I may need another pair! Here's hoping, praying and dreaming about that moment! 

Hope you all have a great weekend! Work buddies I will see you Monday!   


Well we are done! We are actually packed and ready to leave the hotel. Once we got to the hospital we were told we could go home today! So heck ya we are outa here! 

The procedure went smooth! Worst part was the iv. I am not hurting hardly at all. Just a little twinge of pain every now and then. But I've had cramps way worse! So I am relieved! I was hoping to not be in pain all day. 

And for the results....... 5 good eggs!! We were happy! Of course I hoped for more, who wouldn't? Now for the weekend of torture! I pray, pray, pray we will get at the least 3 embryos. Again hoping for 5 but I'd say that never happens. 

Ryan said my first words were "eggs.....eggs....eggs". Dr. Silber was there and told us there were 5. Ryan said then I started saying embryos. Ha. I took me a few minutes to come to. I don't remember saying that but I do remember hearing 5. 

Anyway I want to thank you all for your prayers! Please pray for good news Monday! I love you all! 



Thursday, June 13, 2013

Trying to stay relaxed

So today was a good day. I tried to sleep in but my mind was wandering so I got up. We ate lunch in St Charles and did some looking around. I haven't been stressed at all today... But it's kinda sitting in. 

I am happy the day is almost here though! I am ready to be home and see my Petie! 

I have confidence that I am where I need to be and that my doctors will give 100%. Here they are, the miracle workers: 

My future lies in their hands, well with the guidance of God of course! It's so nice to have complete confidence in your doctors. 

I know I should be resting but I just feel like I have to stay busy! So we are headed to grab a bite to eat and to the movies! 

This will all be worth it in the end no matter what happens! I feel confident about tomorrow, I hope that I am not wrong. I dread the wait until Monday. I also dread the fact they will probably call when I am at work. I may ask to have her wait until after I get home. I want to be with Ryan when she calls. I need to not worry about that yet. 

Here's to tomorrow! It is kinda surreal. When I really think about I can't believe we are doing this! Thank you all for the prayers! 

Wednesday, June 12, 2013


Today's results were still good. 

Estradiol 1361
LH 9.9
FSH 8.7
Progesterone 1.1 

I had 5 follicles on the right and 8 on the left. 

I take my 1st Lupron injection at 7:30 and the 2nd at 9:30 tonight. I take my last does of Clomid tonight and I start the Indocin tablets at dinner. I will take another with breakfast and dinner tomorrow. 

Tomorrow is a total free day! No injections and no monitoring! Yay! 

I have to be at the hospital at 6:30 am Friday morning to check in. My retrieval is scheduled for 7:30. I will know how many eggs they retrieved before we leave the hospital. Bad news is since it will be the weekend I will have to wait until Monday for embryo results! That will be torture! But Joan assured me that I am doing excellent. I asked how many eggs she thought we would get from the 13 follicles. She said she was just guessing but that she would guess between 4 to 8 eggs! That's way better than zero to 4! 

So I am hoping and praying and hanging tough! I'm sure the nerves will kick in tomorrow. 

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Today's results

I have 6 measurable on the right now (one more than yesterday) and still 7 on the left. My coordinator still says I am doing really good. I will monitor again in the morning. She said I would probably take my trigger shot tmrw and be ready for retrieval on Friday. 

So my eggs have a few more days to grow! 

We really are enjoying ourselves!  We have been lounging by the pool, saw a movie, did a little shopping. Now we are on our way to my friend Aubrey's house to visit with her and her little boy, Nate! I am excited, I haven't seen her in a while. 

I'm still not nervous yet. I know I probably will be in the next day or two. But like I said the only thing to be nervous about is how many good eggs we can get and how many grow into our future babies! 

I have been having crazy dreams and night sweats from the medicine but other than that I feel fine! Thanks for reading and praying! 

Monday, June 10, 2013


Just a quick post from my phone...

We just got amazing news! I am responding excellent to the medications. I had 5 measurable follicles on the right and 7 on the left! So from Friday to Monday I went from 2 to 12! I really feel like I am on top of the world! 

My blood levels were good too! My estradiol jumped way up to 717. Joan said that was excellent. 

So now I am monitoring every morning until it is time for retrieval! 

Friday, June 7, 2013


My results were good. I had one measurable follicle on the right that was 1.0 cm. (Measurable is anything above 1 cm.) And there were 6 others that were less than 1 cm. I had one measurable on the left at 1.4 cm. And 12 that were less than 1 cm! Yay! Hopefully some of those smaller ones will catch up by Monday! 

She also gave me my hormone levels:

Estradiol 174
LH 10.5
FSH 11.6
Progesterone 0.8 

I need to do some research on just what all this means. She said they were all within normal range. So I am happy! The only thing is she said they wanted to test these again on Sunday. Since they weren't able to get blood at my local hospital on Monday, they had nothing to compare these results to. So we are going back up one day earlier than we planned but that's ok. 

We are both so excited at this point! We feel so blessed at this point in the journey! I will post again on Sunday. 


Yesterday we met with Dr.Derosa. He is super nice and we feel like we are in the best hands. He has been doing this procedure for 19 years. I told him that on Monday I had 7 follicles. He said "wow and you're young." He said that if I had 7 follicles he would probably be able to get anywhere from zero to four eggs out. Not every follicle will have an egg in it. We knew that going into this there would be a possibility that they could get zero eggs. It's hard to hear but it is what it is. We won't know until we try!

We went to the Cardinals game last night. They bet the Diamondbacks 12 - 8! We had 5 home runs! Shelby Miller pitched. We got to see him get his first hit since in the majors and the next at bat he hit a home run, awesome! We didn't get any balls hit in our section like I was hoping, next time!
Ain't he cute?! He came down with his dad after we sat down. When he walked by he said "dad I thought you said when you bought our tickets that we would be close." Ha he didn't want to sit in the 3rd row, he wanted to sit in the 1st row! I told Ryan that will be our kid. He said ya if he's like his momma. :)

This morning I had my ultrasound and blood work. The u/s tech started on the right, the side that has less follicles. I asked when she moved to the left if there were still only two. And she said that she only measured one (they have to be a certain size to measure) but that she counted 6! Yay! She said she counted 12 on the left! So hopefully that means the meds are working and that I will have a chance at more than zero to 4! We are so excited, more than ever! My blood work went good too, only one stick! Everyone we have encountered at St Louis (both St Luke's and Mercy Hospitals) have been beyond sweet and so quick! 

I haven't heard back from the doctor's office with my official results yet but I will make a quick post when I do. Thanks for all your prayers and support! We love y'all! 

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

It's getting exciting!!!

Today is my last day at work until after my retrieval! Tomorrow morning we are off to St. Louis to meet with the OB that will be doing my egg retrieval. Then Friday morning I will have my 2nd monitoring ultrasound and blood work.

I had the first monitoring on Monday. My doctor said the ultrasound of my follicle size was right where it should be. I still only had 2 follicles in my right ovary and 5 in my left. I was hoping for more this time but I guess it's better than less. They were tiny, which they are supposed to be in the beginning of a cycle. Then hopefully they grow real big!

The blood work Monday wasn't so great! I got stuck 6 times by 4 different people, almost fainted, spent an hour in the blood lab drinking juice, sitting in front of a fan and having warm towels wrapped around my arms before the supervisor of the lab finally got some (not much) blood from the top of my hand. She told me it was enough to do my hormone panels but not to test for the HIV, Hepatitis, Rubella, etc. Which I was fine with, I knew I could do it in St. Louis on Friday. But then later that day the nurse from Dr. Silber's office called and said the lab told her they didn't have enough blood to run the hormone panel. Dr. S said it was okay, we would just wait and see what my levels were on Friday. But man all that for nothing! Oh well! The lady who finally got my blood said that it was probably because I was so cold. My already extremely tiny veins were hiding. Yup I was freezing at 7:30 when I first walked in and by the time I got to the blood lab it was 9:00, so ya I was froze to the bone by then! Oh well.... just a tiny bump in the road. I can handle tiny bumps! :)

I am not really nervous yet, mainly just excited! However, I do admit this week a little anxiety has started to creep in a bit. The "what if's" have tried to ruin my day a couple of times. But I am really doing pretty good at stomping them out. I can tell Ryan is getting excited too. I am certain he worries too but I don't think he is ever gonna let me see that. He is always so positive! Last night I told him that I was starting to get anxious and of course he asked about what. Ha. I said "I don't know, like what if we don't get any eggs, what if we get some but none fertilize, what if some do fertilize but they all die, what if everything goes smooth and I get pregnant in the Fall like planned but then I miscarry." His reply "Baby we knew going into this that it wouldn't be 100%, we don't know until we try." Yup he's right! Then he said something along the lines of we have to think positive and take one day at a time. Which I really honestly feel like I have been and I really do have to pat myself on the back for that! Because after we left our first consultation with Dr. S, the whole way home I thought to myself how am I ever gonna do this without stressing, worrying and panicking the entire time. That was April 5th, two months ago! So I think I have done pretty darn good, I made it a whole two months before I let the "what if's" start creeping in. It's strange really because that is not my personality at all. I feel like I have done so much better than I thought I ever could.

And don't get me wrong I am still positive about next week. I think when you are doing IVF you almost have to be, otherwise you wouldn't get through it! That and pray and trust in God and his plan. I know this plan was designed for us. I know that we can handle this. I know that it has grown my faith, our marriage, our awareness of our health and is preparing us to be amazing and grateful parents.

Anyway back to my schedule, we should be coming home Friday after my monitoring appt. We will then have to be back to St. Louis Monday morning for monitoring again. We will do blood work and ultrasound at least every other day until the doctor says it is time to get my eggs! EEK, exciting! It's okay if you think I am crazy for being excited about being put under and letting a doctor stick a needle into my ovaries. No I am not worried about that, only about what he says when I wake up! Since people have had questions about how that process is done (I think they have trouble wrapping their minds around it) I have included a picture. The doctor will use an ultrasound probe to guide the needle into each follicle and extract the fluid inside which also contains the egg. (I wish my ovaries looked like this! Mine are no where near that full!)

After they get the eggs out they will inject each one with sperm. Like this


Then they will be put in a dish and monitored each day by an embryologist. The goal is for each of the eggs to fertilize. Even though they place the sperm into the egg, that doesn't ensure that it will fertilize and turn into an embryo. But I am praying like crazy they all do! They will know by the next day how many have fertilized. On the second and third day they check to see how good the embryos are growing. The prayer then becomes that by day 3 all of the embryos look like the 8 or 10 cell embryo in the picture below. Those babies are a thing of IVF beauty! Hopefully if everything goes well we will get to see pictures just like these of our future babies. :) :) :)

I will try to make a quick post after each monitoring appt to keep everyone updated on how things are going. Thank you to all of you who have been praying thus far! Now is the time we need your prayers more than ever, prayers for good egg quality that turn into excellent embryos!