Wednesday, June 22, 2016

An Update

Well we kind of fell away from blogging for a bit but I'd like to return.  At last post, Kaiden had arrived.  He's now 2 years old.  A crazy, active, funny, smart, sometimes whiny 2 year old.  And there's more.

After Kaiden turned 1, we started talking about our 1 little frozen embryo back in the Czech Republic.  It was our little expanded AA quality blast - the only one we had left to freeze.

With things heating up in Central/Eastern Europe with the immigration crisis, my husband felt we should start planning our return.

I was not optimistic about our chances.  After all, we had only 1 embryo, it was a FET (which has a lower success rate) and a recent study showed if you have a successful fresh transfer a subsequent FET is less likely to succeed.  My husband on the other hand was quite optimistic.

As before, we planned it as a combo vacation/fertility treatment.  This time the drug regimen was much easier on me - only 4 shots total!  And the new doctor at Reprogenesis did progesterone suppositories instead of Progesterone in oil - a welcome change.

We started our trip with one day in Bratislava - just because I loved it so much the first time.  We took this crazy picture in the catacombs of a church there but didn't notice the cross until after we returned.  Still haven't really figured out how that happened.

Spent a few days in Budapest - loved it!  Food was delicious and the city was so fun to explore.  Then it was back to Brno for our FET.

I was so nervous.  I worried we'd travel all that way and our embryo wouldn't survive thaw (it did).  Or my lining would be too thin (it wasn't).  According to the Dr., the lining was optimal.  When they released our little embryo, they took an ultrasound picture of the air bubble entering the uterus so we could "see" our little one entering my womb.

I did 2 days of bedrest, just like before.  Then we traveled to Prague for a few days since last time I had such bad OHSS we didn't get to sightsee (unless you count a hospital bed as a sight).  Prague was uneventful and we returned home safely.

I was supposed to wait until the next Monday to test but I couldn't.  I peed on a stick on a Wednesday.  I looked at it well before the time had passed and saw a faint line.  I woke up my husband (at 5 am) to show him.  By the time he got up and to the bathroom, it was a strong line. I was in disbelief.

This pregnancy I had more morning sickness and was exhausted but other than that it seemed easier.  I didn't stress about every little thing.  I had trouble keeping up with my giant toddler of course but not that much trouble.

And then, on April 20, Kellan was born.  2 weeks early, 8lbs, 4 oz.  I can't believe it worked a second time and now we have our 2 boys.  Infertility was hard for us but I can't complain - I know so many women go through so much more without the results we got.

I'll try to keep posting about motherhood after infertility.  I hope the blog gives good information, maybe a little hope to those out there still going through that pain.  I can't thank the people at Reprogenesis enough - our results - our babies - are just amazing.

Thanks for reading!

Monday, July 21, 2014


He's here.  He's actually been here for awhile.  9 weeks to be exact.  I went into labor on May 18 at around 9 p.m.  We were watching Game of Thrones.  I started to have a lot o pain but wasn't sure it was labor because they were one right on top of another and not spaced out like contractions are "supposed" to be.

Kaiden was born at 2:56 p.m. on May 19 and he is so perfect.  He sleeps through the night (knock on wood), he smiles, he coos, and I am in love.  I still have a lot on my mind with our long journey through infertility and hopefully I will write more but for the last two months I have been trying to cherish every moment.  He loves to sleep on my chest and I just stare down at him for an hour or more at a time.

I'll be back eventually.  And we'll be going back to the Czech Republic to get our frozen embryo eventually.  But right now I am just a mommy.  Finally.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

MENTS I've Been Quiet...

... because I have a secret.  And I'm scared to put it out there in writing.  Scared I'll somehow jinx this and it will all go horribly wrong.  But I'm about to tell more than my close circle of friends so I guess it's time to share it here.

Today I am 13 weeks pregnant.

13 weeks.  The "safe" zone.  So why am I still so nervous?

There's a whole lot more to tell - about my experience with the clinic, the Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS) that followed my embryo transfer and led to hospitalization in Prague, and all my wonderful pregnancy symptoms (so tired all the time and I crave tacos).

But for now I'll just say I'm back and I'm pregnant.

We saw the baby last weekend on an ultrasound and for the first time it really looked like a baby.  It had hiccups and the little kick of its legs as it hiccuped was perhaps the cutest thing I'd ever seen in my life, topped only a moment later when the baby stuck her/his thumb in her/his mouth.  I can't express it. Every day I talk to my belly and tell it to keep growing - hang in there.  Every day I worry and look at every single piece of toilet paper every time I wipe (and I pee a lot so I wipe a lot) and search for any sign of things going wrong.

But so far, so good.  Baby is measuring ahead of schedule by a few days and has a nice strong heartbeat.  This could really happen - finally - after all the time and heartbreak and surgery and treatments and drugs - I am in my second trimester.

Thanks for reading - I will keep posting and do some posts on the trip abroad and filling in the time between.  I just couldn't put it out there for the world to see before now so I hope you'll forgive my silence.  All prayers continue to be appreciated as we go day by day with the pregnancy!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013


I am officially PUPO - pregnant until proven otherwise.  Embryo transfer was yesterday and now in the dreaded 2 week wait.

To catch up, on day 4 we had 4 morulas and 2 8 cell embryos.  We were very happy all 6 had made it to day 4.  However, the transition from morula to blastocyst is a big one and we knew they might not all make it.

Yesterday we went to the clinic a little after 8 for my acupuncture before transfer.  Then we were taken to a room and the embryologist came in to talk to us about our embryos.  There was good news and bad news but from my perspective the good news outweighed the bad.

Two of our embryos stopped developing and never made it to blast :(.  A third made it to blast but had no inner cell mass.  At the blast stage, the embryo divides into two distinct groups of cells.  The outer mass becomes the placenta and sac and the inner becomes the baby.  With no inner cells, the embryo could never have developed into a baby - just an empty sac.

Which left us with the three other embryos and there's where the good - well really great - news comes in.  Two of them were grade AA hatching blasts - the very best we could have to transfer!  And the third is a grade AA expanded blast - that one is now frozen for a later visit, hopefully for a sibling!

Transferred the two hatching AA blasts, transfer went smoothly - lining at 11mm - had acupuncture again and headed back to the hotel to rest.  The acupuncturist left these tiny needles in my ear and told me to leave them for like 3 weeks - not sure they're going to make it that long since they kind of bug me.

Spent the rest of yesterday resting at the hotel.  Only got up to go to the bathroom and for one quick trip down to the hotel computers to watch the dvd of our embryos growing (amazing!).  Today also taking it easy and praying!  Last night woke up in the middle of the night in terrible pain - like every part of my digestive system was inflamed.  Not sure what caused it but guessing drinking water lying down all day, eating potato chips and pineapple juice, and all the hormones on board conspired to make me a very unhappy camper for a bit.  Feeling better now.  Resting for the rest of the day and then tomorrow we're heading out for a little more sightseeing!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Let the good times roll!

So yesterday's update was - all 6 embryos still kicking - 3 8 cell and 3 6 cell.  Yay.  Then this morning we got our update - 4 compacting morulas and the other 2 are at 8 cells so still potentially viable but lagging  behind a bit.  Overall we are very happy with this news!  Embryo transfer on for tomorrow bright and early - acupuncture then transfer then acupuncture then back to our beautiful hotel (the Barcelo Brno Palace) to rest and relax and be pampered by my husband.

Couldn't be happier right now.

More tomorrow as I'm lying in bed - planning a post about our clinic and one about the things I love and hate here in Europe (hint:  topping the list of loves = food; hates = hard beds)!

Saturday, September 7, 2013

A Quick Update

Hard to blog while over here - in our down time we are trying to see some sights and have some fun plus the husband has been hogging the computer for his blogging.  Here's a quick rundown:

Egg retrieval was on the 4th - retrieved 11 oocytes.
Next day fertilization report - 9 were mature and 7 fertilized via PICSI/ICSI.
Yesterday's day 2 embryo report - 5 at 4 cells, 1 at 3 cells and 1 stopped developing.
Waiting for today's report.

As far as travel it's been ok - I feel a little under the weather here and there but making it through.  After our ultrasound on Friday we were scheduled to stay in Brno through Monday.  But our hotel room's beds sucked.  We were at the Voronez I.  Good price, good breakfast but the bed was hard as rock and the shower had the removable showerhead mounted at about knee height.  Checked out a day early and headed to Bratislava for a night.

Loved Bratislava!  Stayed at Marrol's, a small boutique hotel.  Walked around and saw the castle, churches, and wandered into a local artisan fair where colorfully dressed Slovaks were selling pottery and hand painted eggs.  And the food!  I fell in love with what I'm calling Slovakian mac and cheese.  Dumplings with sheep's cheese and bacon!  Yum!!!

The next day (the 2nd) we drove to Poland where we stayed at a pyramid shaped hotel (yes, a pyramid shaped hotel, called Piramida, in the middle of Poland - so weird).  This hotel was apparently based on this "healing power of the pyramid", which I don't buy into but it was still interesting.  The room was a suite with a huge outer room and a tiny bedroom with a tiny bed.  The shower was amazing though - lights, music, jets all over.  The reason for that side trip was to visit Auschwitz, which we did the next day.  At first the husband thought going to Auschwitz would be morbid/depressing/inappropriate for a medical trip.  But both our grandfathers were in the war and I thought we might never have this chance again.  It was a way to pay our respects to the dead and at the same time remember that history forgotten repeats itself.  It made us talk about the heroes of that time who risked their lives to save others and stand up for what was right and reaffirmed our commitment to raise our children to stand up for the truth and for human life.  I won't say it was "fun" but it was a good visit.

After Auschwitz we headed back to Brno for the egg retrieval.  Egg retrieval on Wednesday and I took it easy the rest of the day in the hotel.  This time we stayed in the Holiday Inn and it was pretty fantastic.  Best beds so far - got great rest.  Shower was normal.  Only complaint was the internet sucked and breakfast wasn't included.  A bit pricey but husband was having serious insomnia so getting him a couple nights' sleep was key.

The next day we headed up to Berlin.  We originally booked at the Holiday Inn near the airport, thinking we would continue the fantastic bed theme.  And the beds were nice after we checked in.  The problem:  our room stank like raw sewage and the a/c and tv didn't work.  We asked them to change our room but they wouldn't.  So we checked right back out and struck out to find a new hotel.  We were able to find one just a bit out of town - very nice, although the a/c still doesn't work (what is up with no a/c in Europe?).  Here we've been seeing the sights and planning to head back to Brno yet again on Sunday for our embryo transfer.

That's the quick update!

Friday, August 30, 2013


So I guess I'm way way overdue for an update.  Things just got so busy in the last stages of planning the trip and now we are in the Czech Republic!!! Hopefully this posts ok because all the sidebars and stuff are in Czech so I'm guessing.

My period started right on time on the 22nd - which was a huge relief.  First I was worried it would come early, which would screw us big time since our flights were booked.  Then I started worrying it wouldn't come on time and even in the morning emailed my IVF coordinator saying it hadn't started.  An hour later - hello Aunt Flo - never been so happy to see you!

Started stims a week ago - 225iu of Gonal-F.  While in the states, we did the injection at midnight every night so that it was 8 a.m. Czech time to keep things consistent.  Very not fun to go to sleep knowing your alarm will go off at midnight and then try to get back to sleep but we made it through.  

Flight was very long and exhausting.  Had to do an injection mid-flight.  So glad to land and get here and then of course the fact that I was about to have my ultrasound became very very real.  I started worrying about whether I had follicles - or enough follicles at least.  For the most part my side effects so far have been pretty mild.  Some fatigue, very slight nausea, and one day back pain.  But overall not too bad, which made me wonder if they were working.

Good news - they were!  Ultrasound this morning showed 6 follicles on my left (lazy) side - 4 of which were 16mm.  On my right side - the good side - 10 follicles with 6 of them at 16mm.  Couldn't be happier about those numbers.  I was hoping for at least 10 but no more than 20 since sometimes egg quality is lower when you have lots.  

Today after my stims and a new injection - orgalutran/ganirelix (which I had a bad skin reaction to), I was tired.  Very tired.  4 hour nap tired.  Which is not what you want when you're in a foreign country and would like to explore but the #1 priority on this trip is the IVF so it's ok.  Had a nice nap and about to head out to dinner.  

Hope I didn't miss anything!  Now just hope these follicles are nice and healthy and retrieval goes well. It was moved up a day to September 4!  More to come!