How do you like your eggs?

First scan was yesterday. it was ok. Nothing earth shattering. Nothing to really write home about but there were 5 follicles of consistent size and 1 smaller one and you know what I was alright with that.  After the last year of having 1-2 follicles and smaller ones that wouldn’t even make it to EPU knowing that I might have 5-6 to work with is a huge relief. I know I say this every time but FUCK seriously, how did this happen to me. I can’t believe I have old fucking ovaries. DOR is not something you can spot so you don’t know you have it till it’s too fucking late. It’s not like I ever had irregular or painful periods, they were always frequent (too frequent!) so it kind of sucks in a horrible way that this is your end game.

Another scan tomorrow and it should mean that EPU is Friday or Saturday.

All going relatively to plan.

Next step is to get those babies fertilised. Chippie needs to bring his A game.

The Big Podcast Giveaway

chon:

Bitter Infertiles may return! If you think you would be interested in taking over the reins get in touch with Mo or the other ladies who were initially involved. There are a few of you out there that I think would be very good at this (I wont name names but I can :) )

Originally posted on Mommy Odyssey:

**Disclaimer: This post was written with the consent of only one other person, though I believe is respectful to other people’s ownership of the Bitter Infertiles podcast. I have made every effort to do so.

Two and a half years ago, in an attempt to find some healing, I had an idea. That idea later became a podcast. It was a podcast that originally started with four hosts, then down to three, then down to none.

There were a lot of reasons we stopped doing it. Some would say it was “drama” because there was a backlash that the three remaining hosts were all pregnant. Some would say there was “drama” behind the scenes.

But that’s not the truth. Yes, there was backlash. There was some drama behind the scenes. But I think most of you know me well enough to know I can deal with backlash and I…

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Cycle day TWO

IVF has begun in earnest.

Period arrived on Sunday, earlier than expected but advised due to scratch this may happen.

Day 2 hormone blood test (FSH, LH) checked today

Given the go ahead.

Injected 150mgs Elonva – immediately started stressing that I didn’t do it properly. That menopur incident 12 months ago is going to piss me off forever. I am always going to second guess myself.

Next injection doesn’t take place until Thursday when I use orgalutron in the morning to suppress ovulation and then 300iu of menopur in the evening to top up the Elonva.

First scan is next Monday 7.45am.

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backing it up slightly.

On Thursday, nervous as all hell I went upstairs for my scratch appointment.

Dr Baby Lady was fantastic. Immediately set me at ease and was having a grand old chat with me. The scratch was not painful (I did take two strong codeine tablets 1hr prior and two mild paracetamol 10m before). It went well. She got a good scratch in to hopefully make the lining nice and sticky for implantation. We are also sending it off for a NK review to see what my levels are.

I picked up my meds and my treatment plan. I actually feel like after my appointment Dr Baby Lady went away and wrote a plan that was appropriate to my diagnosis. There are a few things in there that I have not done before.

The elonva I knew about but I am taking 10,000iu pregnyl as the trigger rather than ovidril. Apparently pregnyl is the worlds oldest fertility drug – still contained in glass vials and is a natural hormone as opposed to a synthetic. Following transfer I will take three doses of 1,500iu pregnyl on day 3, 6 & 9 to help with progesterone and implantation. I have not done this before.

I will also be taking crinone again (yay to cottage cheese) and rather than the dexamathsene I am taking 10mg solene from day 1. Clexane and aspirin will also be taking as per normal.

If my ovaries don’t respond to this stimulating treatment I think it is fair to say they might as well shut up shop and retire.

We are also using ICSI-HA which is one step further in the sperm selection process.

New nurse seems nice.  Finance lady when she saw that I had used Dr Cowboy and now Dr Baby Lady said whoa, you are using the big guns there. I said to her, my body is like a rotten egg, looks delicious and perfect on the outside but on the inside is a stuffed up unit (I really wanted to say fkd up but realise it was totally inappropriate). However reassuring that I haven’t gone backwards. Still wish I could have the intrallipid treatment as well.

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So back to today

Needle done and now I wait. Waiting is the eternal IVF curse. Husband is querying why we are doing this. He made have made reference to age and could I keep up with a newborn. Truthfully, probably not which is why he having the sheer nerve to ask this question and being a few years younger than my old self can now take full evening responsibility. Ha!

IVF#6.3 – A discussion

Tomorrow is scratch day and as I said, yeah I am scared. I am actually really scared of the procedure because I am a huge cry baby with not a great threshold for pain but also clearly, emotionally, doing this AGAIN.

I guess because two cycles were a write off last year but I still went through all the injections and the absolute awfulness of seeing hardly any follicles on that screen was so emotionally scarring that I am really nervous of doing all of this again and for nothing. Another cancelled cycle. When I went into the cycle 12 months ago I wasn’t expecting miracles but I was little cocky. I was definitely thinking it was in the bag.

The funny thing is on the way to work I suddenly realised I haven’t even made an appointment with the nurse to pick up my meds and my period will start in about five days!! That was really stupid. I mean I completely forgot about that part of it. It’s partially because I have changed doctors and have a new protocol and I just totally forgot about what I was supposed to do. I have rung my new nurse today and left a message. I am so sad about leaving Alex my other nurse. She was outstanding. Without question the best nurse I have ever had and a constant source of support when things didn’t go well. I could call or email her whenever and she never cared. That was one good thing about Dr Cowboy as well. Even though the end has gone really bad, and I was so disillusioned with someone I respected so much there was security in knowing that I could call day or night. With my new FS I suspect she is like the others where only an emergency would necessitate a phone call.

I hold strong in my heart the results that happened to my friend A using Dr Baby Lady and the fact we have near identical diagnosis and she is currently the mother of boy / girl twins. That she left Dr Cowboy after a string of failed treatments and feeling like a guinea pig and that the only answer was donor eggs or adoption (bit like me really) and then on her first cycle had her first ever pregnancy – which was a chemical and the second saw success. I also hold strong onto the fact that a down regulation cycle is so fundamentally bad for me that it was crazy even doing it.

I know that for me this isn’t a definite. Infertility has completely robbed me of optimistic nature – but thankfully only when it comes to matters of fertility. It hasn’t broken me completely. I have Dr Cowboy to thank for that because of him I do have my crazy little nutso girl. Boy is she cuhrazy! We love her so bloody much it hurts.

All I know is for this cycle it is an antagonist cycle using a combination of elon.va and meno.pur. Thankfully taking me back down to one injection a night. It will be quick and I am not doing all the extra stuff that I had to do last year such as patches and antibiotics but I am still taking COQ10, fish oil, multivitamin, melotonin and vitamin d. However if I am honest sometimes I forget. I know. I also gave up coffee for a week and have had two in two days. I will start again in five minutes and try and go another week without coffee.  I am also still taking low dose steroids after the cycle starts but no Intrallipds. This is the ONLY thing that I worry about with my new doctor. The only thing. I stand by intrallipids 100%.

I just want this cycle to restore some faith back in my body. I am so sick of it failing me all the time. And I really just want another baby. I am not really ready to let it all go.

Scratch

On Thursday I am scheduled to have the endometrial scratch for our final IVF.

I am scared.

Scared of so many things but mainly that this will not work.

Last chance IVF has such finality about it.

Design developments

Again this is not an infertility sponsored post! However I have news on that I just can’t be arsed writing about it. Same old same old*.

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After i wrote about losing my design mojo I started getting some inspiration and started worrying less that I wasn’t actually an undiscovered interior designer with a perfectly styled home and realised I should just follow what I like and hopefully it will all fit together.

I ended up bidding and winning on this piece

and I think I want it to go here

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how’s that for mad photoshop / design skills.

On the other side I have a buffet / console and the colours will tie in nicely

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please excuse the horrific lighting from my phone. Say hi to Sasha & Frankie! And that whole long hallway there is screaming for art. We are working on it. I am also thinking of putting a mirror above the buffet. I have already worded Chippie up that he is making it. Poor love.

I do want to change the chairs eventually but the table was built by Chippie and I love it. It seats 10 comfortably and perfect for entertaining and having platters in the middle of the table. The chairs are a bit boring and I would like something a bit more funky. I.NEED.MONEY!

However, what I am most excited about is on the weekend Chippie built the bookcase. Like most things in our house it needs to be sanded and stained (like the area underneath) but it is on the hit list so should be done by end of week! it is going to be a slow process in decorating this. I want it to clearly have books on it, interspersed with cool objects but mainly things that have meaning to us rather than looking like I have scoured the big homeware shops and doesn’t have an individual bone in it’s body. A friend asked if I had collected pieces on my travels and I do have some things but most of the stuff I bought when I was travelling around Europe is pretty juvenile (read,crap) as I was broke and couldn’t afford anything cool!!

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They look amazing and so much better than my crappy photos demonstrate (note to self, learn how to take good shots). The rug is also up next for this space now the backyard is completed and dirt isn’t tracked in which will tie it all in together. Last night sitting watching the tennis (I lasted two sets before I realised it was going to be a long game) with the lights reflecting off the rammed earth wall the bookcase really made the space so much more complete and less white and open. It added a nice dimension to it.

It was so hard installing it. Chippie made it in the garage and it is solid hard wood and we need to carry it down the hall and then we had to line it up so Chippie could first drill the holes in the wall and then we had to push it so it lined up perfectly to get the dowl in the holes. It was hard! However was completely worth the effort for a bookcase that was handmade and always has a story to be told with it now.

It’s funny I love reading interior blogs and they have immaculately decorated coffee tables and I prefer mine clear. Firstly, it is right in the way of the TV and secondly, well I have a toddler and lastly it’s just more stuff to dust!

This room definitely needs some more pops of colour and seeing it like this shows me where to go next!

I am also looking into some photography as a less expensive alternative to art and looking at local people to make it more relevant.

Aaaaaand I still need to win the lottery ;)

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* so my period came after being eight days late. EIGHT DAYS. Yeah so I thought I had won the lottery. Except I hadn’t. I have made the call and have the scratch scheduled for the 12th and then looking at a March cycle. I am actually OV testing to make sure I don’t OV early this time because we all know my body is a piece of shit fucked up unit and likes to mess with my head. Fingers crossed.  This money could be spent on a rug but if it works, well it is worth more than a cajillion rugs, houses, artwork and any other superficial thing you can think of.

In the midst of a design mojo crisis

Note this is not an infertility or parenting post!

We moved into our new home six months ago and things have been going along well. The backyard is now finished and Chippie is starting work on the side (now affectionately called Snake Alley*) and I will get my washing line finally up and he can clear all his residual building gear. Then we really need to tackle the front landscaping.

Front of House

Our house is really an advertising billboard for our business so it needs to pack and instant WOW.

We have a rammed earth wall that runs from the exterior all the way through to the kitchen and then a space and an additional internal wall in the living area. There is a boatshed that is clad in a blackbutt timber and we have a front fence that has a limestone column. Our front door is a bespoke hand crafted timber door.  There are four really big things that need to tie together in the landscaping and at the moment we are drawing a blank. All four on their own are stunning and together work really well but the landscaping needs to be the thread that makes it all pop.

I think we are going to get a landscape designer to help us with a concept plan.

The pro’s of using a professional are clearly that. You are using someone for their skill in that specific area. This time we used an architect to bring our vision to life in a set of plans. Only to elevation stage because after that Chippie was covered but when we compare this house to some of our other builds the use of space and layout really stands out. All the space is usable and flows from one end of the house to the other.

The other thing to consider is that the soil and area is coastal. We are 400m from the surf beach and our area is known as limestone country. That is how we built the front column from massive boulders that were pulled from our block when we excavated for the pool. Even now when we were doing the back garden I would often hit limestone literally 5cm under the ground. The plants have to be drought tolerant, limestone tolerant and wind tolerant because we can get some nasty coastal winds coming through.

This works well for us because we love native gardens.

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Australian Bush Sloping Garden Design, Pictures, Remodel, Decor and Ideas - page 9

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Coastal - Landscaping Excellence | Smart Landscapes Mornington Peninsula

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Lastly, the one thing we do know is that the front door area will be paved in the same bluestone pavers as our swimming pool. We will probably do that first as it will be the biggest expense. This is our swimming pool below. The garden area there is really starting to take shape.

IMG_5075-0photo 2IMG_5090-0 because of course! we are going to paint the fence as even though once the plants grow it will hide the fence I think it will make the area more, well more classy.

Interior love

This is where I am having a design confidence issue. I really love the Scandanvian look – the contemporary minimalist nature of it. However, I like colour and I need colour. I am always drawn to reds, burnt oranges and vibrant yellow in paintings so to go a complete muted accented house it just doesn’t sit well. I have halted the next phase of decorating because I don’t really know what direction to go.

We need a rug, artwork, the book case to be finished and the cupboards below to also be completed. These are both being done in a blackbutt timber to match the floorboards and Chippie needs to finish building them. It will look awesome when finalised.

I need to decorate the walls. I need to start the front “good” living area which is actually a space we go in a lot because our old brown leather couch is in there and hot damn the couch is so comfy that we gravitate to this space consistently. Plus, it gets amazing light and is just the spot for an afternoon kip.

I need to finish the guest room and Molly’s play room and I haven’t even started on Molly’s bedroom. This is because we are transitioning to a bed so until I get her official big girl bed it is pretty thrown together.

I need to finish our bedroom. I need a mirror and again art on the wall. I want to put more of my photos up. I found this awesome app called Brushstroke that turned your photos into art but they don’t send to Australia. I am gutted as I had a great shot converted. I don’t know if it will print well due to the iPhone pixallations if do it myself. I would like some professional family shots done but I am a bit hesitant having family photos all over the wall. I don’t know it isn’t really my thing.

Yesterday at lunch I was looking at art on line and I am definitely moving back towards COLOUR so I am keeping the Scandavian feel in the furniture and the clean lines but I am going to keep my own style and not change everything to fit into that look by incorporating colour through art. Besides, our walls are so white they we need some pop! That way I will feel like everything is working together because we have kept our dining table which is not scandavian it was handmade by Chippie out of Queensland recycle rainforest timber (blackbean it is stunning) but I think eventually I will change the dining chairs as they don’t really fit at the moment.

Looking at the art made me feel re-energised and ready to tackle the rest of the house. If you follow me on pinterest you would have seen some of this pop up before. It was good to go back and look at it.

David Bromley – Jade I wish I could afford a piece of his work. I have loved it for a long time. Now it has become very mainstream appearing on the Block and often in design and decorating magazines.

Kirsten Jackson – Happy Me Chipipe and I first saw her work in a Byron Bay Gallery and fell in love with it immediately. Wish I could afford the price tag!

Metropolis - Original Painting by Leon Lester | StateoftheART Gallery $5000

Leon Lester – Metropolis I found this on a website called stateoftheART gallery. Um, yes please. Can someone lend me $5,000?

Raelene Stevens – My Country I love Aboriginal art.

Scrub Walk

Rosetta Santucci – Scrub Walk First saw her work on Offspring in Nina’s bedroom and have coveted a piece ever since. Her work is actually really affordable but the size is a bit small 50cm. Still, I think I will one day splash out. I know exactly where I want to see her work in our house.

Writing this has given me a renewed sense of confidence. I just need to win the lottery, or rob a bank!?

* snake alley refers to the fact that a few weeks ago on a stinking hot night a freaking baby tiger snake came down the side of our house in search of water. It was clearly disorientated and not normal but a bite from a baby is no different to an adult. Cue: major freak out. It was instantly beheaded (sorry for any animal purists but no) but it put the wind up. it actually came down the clean and populated side of the house. A snake normally veers away from noise not towards it. However I said to Chippie we have to clean the other side which could be a snake haven with lots of places to hide. It’s been a bad snake season. Gross.

Toilet training – round 2

Six weeks ago we attempted toilet training.

Things started off well. Until she got gastro and her poos (never nice to begin with) went from 2x day to about 4 million a day and she was going through more pairs of knickers than I cared to admit.

After one particularly horrendous weekend we put her back in a nappy and there was a collective sigh of relief. Everyone was happy. I think if the gastro hadn’t of hit we would have pushed through but it was so disgusting and foul we just needed to make things easy (and sometimes parenting is all about making it easy).

Then Christmas hit and it was frantic and crazy, it was peak business for me at work and we were always doing something. Molly started telling us she was a big girl (during an intense tantrum) and we said yes but you will be a big girl when you wear knickers again. Then I was procrastinating because I just couldn’t be arsed training again but then Molly and I mutually agreed that after our camping holiday we would go into knickers.

Now, the last month or so my child as discussed has been a demon child.

I am going to put it down to some sort of wonder week because last week. My child kicked angel arse. It was as if she realised that I desperately needed a light at the end of the tunnel and she delivered. Kid knocked it out of the park.

She also delivered an end to day sleeps but more on that another time (we graduated to toddler bed and she flat out refuses to sleep during the day. I’m not going to fight it).

Friday she woke up and I said RIGHT are you ready for knickers and she was a little blase so we got out her kicker collection which seriously rivals Imelda Marco’s shoe collection – it is full on and perhaps a little overboard. Anyway we had fun putting them into categories – penguins, peppa pig, stripes, dots and owls and she got to choose her knickers.

I think part of her demon moments have definitely been a part of comprehension increases because her level of awareness at this point in time versus end of November is massive. It was like a light switch had been enabled.

At this point in time she is nailing the wee’s. Number ones are going down well.

Team brown not so much. However, I am noticing the signs. She definitely sneaks off and goes very quiet. i think we will get there. We didn’t have any brown accidents yesterday and one wee accident because she was too busy playing. We just strip her off but still put her back on the toilet and Chippie was surprised to see she still went so I am taking that as a good sign that she realised that she was needing to go the loo.

Today will be a huge test because she has gone to day care in her knickers again and I have emphasized that they need to encourage she isn’t at the stage where she walks and goes by herself. She needs some prompting and if they leave her be I am going to have bags of washing tonight. There didn’t seem to be a massive group of toddlers there today so I am hoping that they will. In saying that I packed about 30 spare pairs of pants so she should be ok. Her bestie Emily is also training and this morning I put her on the day care toilet (man they are so cute and little!) and they did one together – fingers crossed they work together.

Round 2 feels more successful and less stressful and now we are on this path we are staying there.

This week has seen two major transitions for Molly and girlfriend has handled herself like a pro. I think I will keep her.

Toddler Camping

We took advantage of my three day week and to make the most of Chippie’s last holidays and left Wednesday night to go camping up on the Goulburn river. The weather had predicted the rain event of 2015 but we braved it and went anyway.

Thankfully we were on the right side of the ranges and missed the bulk of the rain. It rained Friday night and Saturday morning and cleared up for the rest of the time. Sunday, the day we were leaving was perfect camping weather (of course!) but it was nice to get home and be prepared for the week ahead.

Camping with a two and a half year old is distinctively different to camping with a baby and even an 18m old.

If you have a two and a half year old you will know why. You will even know what I am making a clear distinction between two and two and a half. You see, at 21/2 something fundamentally changes in your placid, gorgeous, sweet tempered child. The one you silently brag about when other people have issues. The one that is always smiling and happy and fun!

The two and a half year old BECOMES A DEVIL CHILD.

She even told me herself. I not a princess mummy I a demon.

Out of the mouth of a child (via her mummy and daddy I think, another life lesson there)

Let me set the scene.

Friday night. 11pm. Caravan park quiet. All you could hear was the river and the occasional bird and possum.

Oh and my child screaming her head off. In a tent.

Apparently she didn’t wish to sleep. She didn’t want her daddy. Only I would do but on her terms. After 15mins of ferocious whispered “be quiets” I ended up throwing her in the car and driving in pitch black (saw a wombat crossing the road which was kinda cool) to the main road. This was good she fell asleep within seconds. I even did the whole “I can’t believe the way you are behaving” it was like I was a normal parent.

Then we tried to transfer her with no success. Cue more screaming and crying accompanied by a coughing fit. She ended up sleeping with me on a sticky hot night until eventually at 2am I could put her back in her bed.

Red RED faces in the morning as we profusely apologised to our neighbours who were packing up to leave (coincidence? I hope not). Most of them understood a few were pissed.

I know that she is in the process of a serious transition and I know within myself I need to find that middle ground and I am actually incredibly thankful right now I don’t have a newborn to also accommodate because that would be really hard.  A combination of tough and soft love seems to work. I get down on her level and face her so that she isn’t looking up at me, a well placed cuddle but also time out is something that is working. At least to let her just calm down a little bit as the terror is a tiny dictator and can put the fear of god into you. It doesn’t always work though. Honestly it is hard.

Other than that though she veered between amazingly gorgeous, sweet and hilarious to stroppy, grumpy and mean. She loved camping, loved being outdoors, loved sleeping in the tent and sitting on her own camp chair. I think she loved more than anything being the centre of attention between both sets of grandparents. Something that rarely ever happens.  We will despite the outrageous temper tantrums continue to do it because it is this stuff that memories are made of and soon she will be that little bit older to ride a bike around the park and make new friends on the jumping castle.

Chippie and I also had a great time and are making plans to go away on another weekend soon.

Camping with a toddler is a very different experience. Filled with great rewards and hair pulling frustration. Ahh this is what I wanted! Parenting warts and all :)

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My new normal

I would like to know what happened to my sweet, docile, funny and not hard daughter?

She has gone. The last month or so has been so damn hard.

Parenting for the most part has been pretty smooth (ignoring flat heads, hip dysplasia, non weight gain as a baby). Sure we battle over food – Molly would eat chicken nuggets, chips and pasta every day without fail if she could and sleep is always a battle – I have never had a baby that goes night night mum and toddles off to bed. No, it is usually an “I NOT TIRED, I NOT GO TO SLEEP” but usually mama prevails and she goes to bed.

Lately our life is this;

Our toothpaste fight this morning was epic. EPIC I tell you.

Lately it seems every day is just a battle of wills.

My usual sweet placid husband has been pulling his hair out. Even he, who has the patience of a saint (I on the other hand have a short fuse) is ready to snap.

I can’t put her in dresses, brush her hair, put her hair clips in, put her hair up, brush her teeth and don’t even get me started on toilet training which had gone so well till a bout of gastro put us back in nappies and now she REFUSES to go to the toilet. I have no sway at all. I have told her point blank after next week it is back in knickers. She basically stuck her middle finger up at me (figuratively not literally).

Yes, this is two and it is so much fun!