Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Plan B

As Dr. Beltsos suggested, we met with Mindy Berkson of Lotus Blossom Consulting to discuss our "plan B" in case our next cycle was not successful. We traveled to Chicago to meet with Mindy at her office. It was evident to us that Mindy was very experienced and knowledgeable when it comes to helping couples in our situation. She has a vast range of resources to help with all parts of the process. While we were very impressed with Mindy's presentation, it was also a very overwhelming experience. Neither Greg, nor I had any idea of the cost of surrogacy. I will never forget our meeting with Mindy that day and our ride down in the elevator. I left feeling like it was a lot of money, but if this is what we needed to do, then we would do it. Greg did not agree with me at this point which brought a lot of emotions out during the car ride home.

I think that I cried the entire ride home because of our disagreement in terms of whether surrogacy would be our "plan B". I felt like we would be doomed if this next cycle didn't work. I was really sad and scared. The end of December was definitely an ultimate low for me in terms of our fertility journey. It probably didn't help that I ended up with Strep throat on top of everything. I felt so defeated and began to question whether we were really meant to be parents at all.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Maggie



My niece, Maggie, is a true blessing in my life. After receiving the first no from an IVF cycle in April of 2010, I made sure to always have my niece with me on the day of my pregnancy test results. She helped me to stay strong when I received the devastating news time after time. I love her so much and can't imagine life without her in it.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Post Transfer Consult

I was scheduled to have a post transfer consult with Dr. Beltsos tomorrow, but instead received a phone call from her tonight. It was so nice to hear from her and be able to discuss the next treatment plan. Dr. Beltsos always starts these conversations by asking how I am doing. It is nice to be working with a doctor that I have known for so long. She has become more than just a doctor, but someone who truly cares and offers support in any way that she can. During our phone call, we planned for a fresh IVF cycle to start right away. She wanted me to have some additional bloodwork done to rule out any circulation problems that might be preventing implantation. We also planned to transfer three embryos versus the usual two. Finally, we discussed preparing for gestational surrogacy if necessary. She referred us to an Infertility Consultant named Mindy Berkson of Lotus Blossom Consulting.

Throughout these fertility treatments, Greg and I have been lucky to have wonderful insurance, as well as a doctor that is keeping our coverage in mind when planning for future treatments. My insurance covers four fresh IVF cycles. Frozen transfers do not count as one of the four. This upcoming cycle in January would be our third fresh cycle. Gestational Surrogacy is something that has come up many times throughout our fertility journey due to the condition of my uterus. If this third cycle was not successful, we would be saving our last cycle to be used with a gestational surrogate.

I felt very optimistic after my phone conversation with Dr. Beltsos. I was confident that we were doing everything possible to ensure success for our next cycle. I also felt good that we were beginning to explore surrogacy as a "plan B".

Monday, December 20, 2010

Pregnancy Test

Today was our pregnancy test to find out if the frozen transfer worked. I went to the FCI Glenview office this morning to have my blood drawn. Then I spent the rest of the day waiting for the phone call in which I would hear if we were pregnant. It was a hard day for me. I really had no feeling one way or the other as to whether or not I was pregnant. I just wanted the phone call to come so that we would know. I slept the day away while waiting for the call. Finally, around 5:00 we heard from the office. I made Greg answer the phone because I was too nervous and didn't want to experience hearing another no. Unfortunately, another no is what we received. We were heartbroken and devastated. I had undergone two more surgeries and transferred a beautiful embryo and we still had no baby.

I am so thankful to have such a supportive husband on these days, as well as family and friends. Greg held me and let me cry. I was able to speak with a few friends and finally decided to pick up my niece, Maggie, from daycare and have her spend the night with us. Seeing her beautiful smiling face always helps me to forget about my pain on these emotionally draining days. I am so blessed to have all of these special people in my life to help me overcome the sadness.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Frozen Embryo Transfer

Throughout the end of November and beginning of December, I began taking estrogen and progesterone to prepare my uterine lining for the transfer of our frozen embryo. Dr. Beltsos was using my natural cycle, in addition to the estrogen and progesterone for additional support. I was also receiving weekly acupuncture treatments at Pulling Down the Moon. After about 2 weeks worth of ultrasounds to monitor my cycle and track the thickness of the uterine lining, we were ready to transfer the embryo on December 9th. Greg and I traveled to the  FCI River North IVF center for the transfer. Everything went very smoothly. My lining looked great. The embryo thawed nicely and was perfect. We were so optimistic that this would be the one. The pregnancy test was scheduled for December 20. Now it was time to wait and pray.