Sunday, September 20, 2009

Things That Make You Go, "Hmmmm"

Are the messages I am getting from the Universe, or my fears projected upon the world? Last week, as I felt in my gut that trying one more time with my eggs was the right thing to do, I get behind the bus with the "be an egg donor" add on it. Later in the week, I hear the "be an egg donor at BigShotClinic" ad on the radio. When I am once again thinking about cycling with my eggs as I am driving to work, I see a passenger in a vehicle who is handicapped, probably from birth defects. Part of me thinks the Universe is trying to tell me something, and the other half of me thinks it's just my fears being reflected back to me.

Here is what I do know. I had a fabulous cycle this month, 25 days with a 12 day luteal phase. I rarely have 12 day luteal phases. It has been three months since I started juicing. I cut back when I had the short cycle the one before this, but I can only theorize that the traveling screwed up my ovulation. I have since been trying to still juice twice a day, but I don't get bent out of shape if I don't have time to. Has the juicing helped with my egg quality?

I know it has not helped with my estrogen production. I still get hot flashes, more than I would like to admit. That means my FSH is probably high, but I would expect that at my age. My body is trying to crank out it's own follistim. My body really wants to get pregnant with my own eggs. The problem is if my FSH is high, then the stims won't do much in terms of recruiting more follicles. But do the hot flashes really mean that my egg quality is crap? This I do not know, but it is what the doctors tell you. I think that maybe the estrogen priming protocol will help lower my FSH, though Dr. BloSun did not blow any sunshine on this idea.

After seeing how long this luteal phase lasted for me, I'm all fired up again about trying with my own eggs. I have a few action items I need to take care of first:

1) Checking with the embryologist to see if we have enough of Magic's frozen sperm for both a cycle with my own eggs and one with donor eggs without having to do ICSI. We have already decided that ICSI is not right for us. We would certainly have enough sperm if we did decide to do ICSI, but neither Magic nor I feel good about it after our last fiasco.

2) Convincing Dr. BloSun to let me do a fresh transfer without polar body testing. I have done a little bit of research on polar body testing, though I have been having a hard time finding relavent articles. Basically, the technique was developed for countries that do not allow genetic testing on embryos. The testing methodology has lots of potential for errors, which is why I think the success rate is so low. To me, polar body testing does not make sense if your pregnancy rate is only 20% when transfering normal eggs. I have not found a published journal article anywhere that says that doing polar body testing increases an older woman's chance of pregnancy. Maybe in the case of an older woman having recurrent miscarriages with IVF, but that is not my issue. Maybe Dr. BloSun forgot that the reason I'm not getting pregnant is because Magic has no swimmers, not because we've been trying all this time on our own.

I am so angry that I have to do all this crap, the research, the negotiation, etc, etc. However, I do know that it is imperative. I can not have the attitude that this is what my I'm paying my doctor and embryologist for, because I learned the hard way once already that they do not have the time to care for me in such an intensive way. I have to do my own research and be my own advocate. It just makes me so mad.


Infertile In the City said...

Sounds like you are coming closer to a decision that you can live with and this makes me oh so happy. Researching is a pain in the butt, but, you're right, they are not going to do it (and I think, really think, that all this activity, researching, juciing, all the active seeking a baby, doing everything you can is sending a message to spirit baby?). This is what i tell myself, that spiritbabies see my torortuing myself and know that I will look after them, do everything humanly possible to be a great mother... make sense or crack pot? (also my uncle died and i wonder if spirit baby needed to chat with him?)....who knows.

Jill M. said...

I'm sorry that you're faced with this difficult decision. I would not do PBB if I was in your shoes. I would just transfer the best of the crop and grow the rest out. On the DE vs OE, that's a tough one and I wish you clarity in the process of coming up with the answer. Hugs

lastchanceivf said...

I hear thee on having to be your own advocate. I feel like I had to fight for a lot of things recently but it does, indeed, suck.

As far as ICSI--I guess I thought that AH was the real risk for what happened to you before, but maybe I am just misunderstanding. It sounds like maybe you are closer to resolving the idea of DE if you get to do one more cycle with your eggs? I can only hope you won't even have to think any further after your upcoming OE cycle!

Happy juicing!

Mad Hatter said...

Grrrrrrr! I'm angry, too, on your behalf, on all of our behalfs (behalves?). You're so smart, Phoebe, to be doing such thorough research. I actually have an alternative interpretation of the 'Be an egg donor' signs - perhaps they are telling you that YOU can be you OWN egg donor? Just a thought...;-) Your gut seems to be saying this, too. One thing my RE told me about high FSH, for what it's worth, is that it isn't consistently high and can change from month to month...yes, it means stims won't work necessarilywell on us, but it doesn't mean ALL your eggs are the same quality, good or bad. Women with an FSH of over 100 have conceived. I think the positive changes in your cycle are so meaningful and that you have done an awesome job of taking care of yourself and educating yourself. I am sending you good energy for your upcoming agenda!!

Lavender Luz said...

It's true that no one cares about your outcome the way you do, so all this research is probably necessary. You know SO much about the goings on in a female body; I think someone should grant you an honorary RE diploma.

Science and clairsentience. Souns like you are using them both to reach your baby.

Lost in Space said...

I'm sorry, Phoebe. It shouldn't have to be this hard or require this much effort to get to the other side. You are fighting the good fight my dear and I hope your reward is as sweet as I think it can be.

mekate said...

I pretty much hate this whole dang thing- I am with you there!
yeah, clearly there is no one right answer for everyone, otherwise we'd all be doing whateveritis. I honor your desire to make your body healthier and that will serve you well no matter what.
So glad your cycle was a good one-- and wishing you all the best with whatever comes next.


Sweet Georgia said...

It's true, we have to be our own best advocates because no one else is going to be. It's a tough position to be in and it really does get tiring having to carry the load all of the time. Hugs. I think once you get your answer regarding if there's enough sperm for both cycles then you'll be able to plan your next step.

I did an abbreviated version of the EPP. I felt amazing on the estrogen - just awesome. I don't know if it helped with my fSH or not.

About seeing signs - I think that when we're focussed on something we tend to see that reflected back to us in our environments. We're looking for a new car and were looking at the Nissan Cube. Now I'm seeing those cars everywhere.

Beautiful Mess said...

All those signs are hard to sift through. You want to be whats best, obviously and it's hard to know your choice is the right one.

It's frustrating to be doing all this research, but at least you know EXACTLY what you're looking for. You're finding articles that are important to you and that pertain to YOUR situation. It sucks, but at least you're control of the information that goes into your head.

Sending you lots of love. I'm praying that your choice comes to you easily.

niobe said...

I don't have any answers for you, but I will say that at some point, after much going back and forth, it became absolutely clear what the right path for me was. Hoping that kind of clarity will find you.

Me said...

The docs at bigshotclinic are better than most. But they still don't seem to know as much about what's right for MY BODY as I do. And, interestingly, they don't always listen/believe me when I tell them. :( I swear I have to be one of their most annoying patients!