all I want for Christmas is…

… well, if you’d asked me a few weeks ago, I would of course said a BFP and a happy, healthy pregnancy.

Sadly, some things are not meant to be. I started spotting again 2 days after official test day; this turned into five days of light red bleeding and a full on bleed this morning.

Scan today at 5w2d showed no pregnancy. HCG levels were still rising last week so they are checking again to rule out an ectopic, but it’s pretty clear to me that I have miscarried.

Obviously, this is deeply disappointing for H, myself and our families, especially after a positive result. However, we are so, so lucky to have our little Nipper from round 1 who is a constant source of joy and amusement, and after the initial shock and numbness, I know that we will be ok.

I thought it would be hideous to miscarry over Christmas but in fact it’s not so bad. I can spend a lot of time at home with H and the Nipper, we will have a few days with the family, and my father will no doubt attempt to medicate me with gin, which will probably work.

New year in a few days, and a new start.

I will probably revert to occasional blogging here for now but will be back and, in the meantime, a very merry Christmas to all our readers.

xxx

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NO WAY

Official Test Day is tomorrow. I like to be prepared, so needless to say I have already done a few HPTs in advance so that I am suitably forewarned and forearmed for the outcome.

CBD, 7dp7dt. Slightly mad.

CBD, 7dp7dt. Slightly mad.

FRER, 5dp5dt to 10dp5dt. Slightly madder.

FRER, 5dp5dt to 10dp5dt. Slightly madder.

Superdrug, 5dp5dt-11dp5dt. Completely insane.

Superdrug, 5dp5dt-11dp5dt. Completely insane.

OK, I’ve done 18 tests, and that’s not even including the BFN ones I dementedly did 3 and 4dp5dt.

Holy moly guacamole I’m up the duff.

testing testing testing

5dp5dt. Further test this morning with FRER. BFN. In a fit of violent denial, cracked open offending test and scrutinised test strip under bedside light until convinced self that a faint positive line was visible.

H confirmed. Joy!

Obsessive googling then took me on a shame spiral of stories about evaporation lines and indent lines and false positives when dementedly cracking opening tests to find that elusive result.

The line, if there ever was one, disappears. Despair…

Did a superdrug cheapie test. There is a very, very, faint line in the positive box, visible without forensic examination. We’re talking a real squinter. Keep checking every few minutes. It’s still there.

I realise this is completely deranged.

let it snow let it snow let it snow

On 25 November, on a beautiful, crisp frosty morning, we went in for our D12 scan. I felt totally negative and despondent. I’m an idiot. Lining was 10mm and we were good to crack on to transfer.

So, as the weather reverted to more typical northern November gloom and greyness, it was bye bye buserelin and onwards and upwards with the utrogestan (literally) (sorry).

On which note what is it with the utrogestan applicators? I would have more assistance from a propellant pencil.

Transfer was scheduled for yesterday, 3 December, which was another beautiful, crisp frosty morning. I’m not arrogant enough to believe that the weather organises itself around my IVF cycle but hey, I’ll take any good omens going, thank you so very much.

Despite the weather and H’s chipper mood, I still felt pretty grim when we arrived. We had decided, after a pretty blunt bollocking from one of the nurses, that transferring both would not be sensible, but this opened a whole new world of neuroses. What if one didn’t survive the thaw? What if neither survived? What if one survived, but with limited viability, and we had to make decisions about defrosting the other and then possibly letting one go? For want of a more eloquent analysis: arrgghh. (These sentiments not helped by the fact our transfer was delayed by an hour, allowing for a whole range of hypotheses to float through my mind, although having been told to attend with a full bladder these thoughts were ultimately eclipsed by more pressing physical concerns).

Anyway, like I said, I’m an idiot. They only had to defrost one. It survived fully intact and is the same grade as the Nipper. It went in fine and now we have one little snowflake on board, and one still in the freezer. A good position to be in.

And I have to give myself a shake and a slap and remember how lucky we have been, both with our last cycle and with the smooth running of this one. There are many out there who have a far tougher time. The reason we were late is that the first two transfers were “difficult”. I don’t know what this means precisely, but I hope for those first two couples those difficulties were resolved, and they have a successful outcome.

Anyway, now for a few days of lounging about the house in PJs, pretending to work but spending most of my time googling “How early can I take a home pregnancy test?” and eating toast.

It’s funny how reality can crystallise nebulous feelings. I was never keen on the idea of IVF, but when we were told it was our only option, all doubt vanished. Likewise this time, whilst I have no doubt that I want another child, my feelings have been mixed about the process, for various reasons: the drugs seemed much tougher this time; work is not great; there are decisions about my career to be made; and life with a ninky nonk Nipper is wonderful but not always easy; and then there’s the guilt for even thinking about these other things. Anyway, now that our little blastocyst is on board, the fog has lifted and all that matters now is getting that BFP.

Please stick, little snowflake. Please, please stick.

bastard bastard bastard

I’ve not quite kept up the detailed and informative chronicle I planned of this year’s IVF fandango, so here’s a snapshot of the last 3-4 weeks in an attractive summary format:

No. of buserelin induced tantrums (“BITs”)

30-40.

Common triggers of BITs

H breathing, H speaking, H doing nothing, H doing anything, H failing to wipe down Nipper’s bib, H looking at me, H not looking at me, H doing things to help, H not doing things to help, H going to sleep, H not going to sleep, any event or circumstance after 9.30pm.

Items thrown, hit or broken during BITs

Mug, tray, dishcloth, scrubbing brush, washing up bowl, bin, bucket, broom, hoover, dog bowl, hairbrush, hair straighteners, clothes, mattress, pillows, phone, glasses, chair, tube of toothpaste (beaten violently against sink for its crimes)

Injuries and damage sustained during BITs

Cut hand (on broken chair), burnt hand (hair straighteners), poss. broken finger (beating toothpaste against sink), large quantities of toothpaste on clothes and bathroom walls (ibid.)

Positive thoughts about buserelin generally

0.

No. of days completed of health eating and exercise

0.

Slices of toast consumed to date during treatment

50+?

Anxiety levels about a) failure of frosties to thaw b) failure of frosties to implant c) general level of insanity surrounding what is almost certainly our last IVF attempt whilst simultaneously dealing with sea of shit at work, general career crisis, and caring for deranged (but perfect) Nipper

100%.

I can’t say I’m having a lot of fun this time round. Mind you, I can’t say last time was a lot of fun either, but the side effects seem a lot worse this time and positivity levels feel very low.

Down-reg scan was fine though, and v. sensible nurse has persuaded us that we would be insane and irresponsible to put back both blastocysts. I know she’s right, and I’m certain that we will only go with one, but it is much harder this time to think of the other all alone in the freezer, lost and lonely amongst the peas and fish fingers.

Also, quite anxious about some of the nebulous hypotheses that have been floated as to what we do if the first frostie defrosted suffers cell loss, i.e. do we defrost the second, pick the best, and toss the other? I am forever indebted to the scientific advances that gave us our little Nipper, but I have mixed feelings to say the least about having to make this kind of decision. I really hope we don’t have to.

and off we go

After a week or two of dithering (job applications in the pipeline, big client meeting, procrastination procrastination procrastination) I finally got my arse in gear and started last Wednesday (15 Oct).

Round one was a 5 day course of Provera (progesterone) to trigger a cycle. I had no qualms about this as I have taken this several times over the years in one form or another. This complacency was misplaced, as on Friday I had a filthy migraine with loss of vision in both my eyes. To be honest it was pretty scary as I was home alone with the Nipper. With immense calmness and fortitude, I immediately concluded I was having a stroke or DVT or some other thrombotic event and called the clinic in a major panic. They were good and, mainly, very reassuring (apart from the voicemail left later on saying “Oh, by the way, if you do have any symptoms of DVT or PE, do let us know”… ).

The long and short of it was: stop the Provera and come in for a scan and to discuss options. This was fairly disheartening. I know from last time that any IVF cycle is a rollercoaster, and never quite goes to plan, but it was upsetting to hit problems within just a few days of starting.

Anyway, a week on and we’re back on track, or at least a track, if not the same track. It seemed that the 3 days of Provera did the trick, and the clinic have now altered my protocol to enable me to start taking Buserelin now rather than in 3 weeks time.

I couldn’t get in for an injection teach, but it all came screaming back to me as I sat at my desk at the crack of dawn yesterday, flicking bubbles out of an insulin syringe and voluntarily injecting myself with the demon fluid. I already feel pretty bleak and angry, as I did last time, but whether that’s an early reaction to the buserelin, or a hangover from the Provera, or simply the natural state of my personality, I don’t care to evaluate.

So, it’s 3 weeks now of hormonal fun and games until the down reg scan on 14 November. I’ll keep you posted as to which household appliances I break this year.