Thursday, February 5, 2015

Updates

The past few weeks have been a whirlwind. Due to having shared my blog with friends and family, I've been hesitant to share what's been going on. But, I've decided I need to get this off my chest. 

I had my follow up appointment with my ob/gyn on January 7th. They did an ultrasound and there was a large cyst on my left ovary (the ovary without a tube). Having had a positive ovulation test the week prior I assumed it was a corpus luteum cyst from ovulation. The ultrasound technician said it was hard to tell what kind of cyst she was looking at, but if I thought I had ovulated it was possible it was a corpus luteum cyst. I talked with my dr after the ultrasound. I was meeting with him because my cycle the prior month had been 62 days and I felt like a hormonal nightmare. He said he didn't feel like I needed to do anything specific, but he was happy to offer progesterone to help regulate my cycles. I told him that I had started taking Pregnitude (a myo-inositol and folic acid supplement) I had leftover from my IVF cycle with Lucy and Clara and felt like it was really helping with my moods and to shorten my cycles. 

I left the appointment feeling positive. I was feeling like my moods were better, my cycles were shortening, and I was tuned in enough to my body to have an idea of what was going on. Based on my ovulation test and ultrasound it seemed I ovulated the week prior on CD 16. That was way better than the prior month. Maybe the myo-inositol was helping. 

The next day I started to feel like taking another ovulation test was worth taking. Having been clued into my body and how I was feeling, I thought I was showing signs of ovulation. Within a minute of taking the test I had a super dark and obvious positive test. Compared to the week prior, it was a much more convincingly positive test. At one point I debated calling my drs office to find out the size of the cyst on the ultrasound. It made me wonder whether it was actually a follicle rather than a post ovulatory cyst. I never did call. 

At that point I started to feel frustrated and like I had no idea what was going on. Just the day before I had my appointment and left feeling so positive. I was frustrated my cycle was going to be longer, and who knew how many times I'd get positive ovulation tests that month. I had read that using ovulation tests with PCOS can yield inaccurate results. Was this going to happen every week? Were my cycles going to continue to be 50-60 days?

11 days later after my second round of positive ovulation tests (on January 20th) I wrote this post: 

Yesterday morning after putting the girls down I started to get myself ready since we had a play date scheduled with some friends. On a whim I took a cheapy pregnancy test. Prior to hopping in the shower I peeked at it and swore I saw a shadow of a second line.

While in the shower I talked myself down. There was no way. I knew I ovulated from the ovary without a tube. 

When I got out I took another look. There was definitely a shadow of a second line. So, like any sane person would do, I used two more tests. Both also showed a super faint second line. It was at that point that I started shaking and didn't stop for at least an hour. 

The first thing I did was to email Dr. Braverman. He said to get an HCG test done ASAP so I called my ob. They were happy to call a script in to my local hospital. 

The girls woke up and we went to our play date. It was nice to have a bit of a distraction from my racing mind. From her house I dropped the girls at home with my mom and went to the dentist. Luckily the dentist didn't take long and I was able to head over for blood work after without having to tell my mom. 

On the way home I stopped at he pharmacy to pick up my metformin and purchased some FRER pregnancy tests. I came home and took one only to see 2 lines again. 

I didn't want to tell W over the phone or text so I waited until he got home. As he was feeding the girls their afternoon snack I set up my camera and took a video while I handed him the tests. His face was absolute shock and confusion at first that quickly turned into happiness and excitement. 
I had to laugh that these were the shirts I picked out for Clara and Lucy that morning. 
Two days later I wrote this:

As I said, the first person I contacted when I discovered on Monday I was pregnant was Dr. B. He advised me to get a beta ASAP and I did that afternoon.

I called my ob's office to get the results on Tuesday. My HCG was 21 and my progesterone was 14. I had taken another FRER test that morning and the line was darker than the previous afternoon. With the positive result, my ob's office wanted me to repeat the test on Wednesday. 

I emailed Dr. B Tuesday afternoon with the results and he advised I call the office and register with their pregnancy management. I called that afternoon and talked with the receptionist. Despite telling me she'd email me the packet of info, she didn't that afternoon.

I didn't sleep well all night and finally emailed Dr. B early Wednesday morning saying I'd called but hadn't gotten the information. He replied quickly and I heard from the office shortly after. They sent me the packet of info I needed to fill out and fax or email back ASAP. 

After our Music Together class this morning (Wednesday) I headed for another blood test. From there I went somewhere to fax the paperwork. 

I got my protocol Wednesday afternoon and medications are being ordered. I will be on Lovenox, baby aspirin, neupogen, metformin, and calcium. 


I'm feeling so anxious and scared. I said it's impossible to embrace this pregnancy without getting excited and I'm too scared something will go wrong to get excited. 

Things moved quickly to get medications ordered. My second beta was 73. This was a doubling time of 25 hours. I found out my insurance needed to pre-approve the neupogen so we paid for the first vial OOP at $360 so I could get started ASAP.

A few days later I called the insurance company to find out an update on the medication. I was told it was denied because I didn't have any of the specified conditions listed for the medication. They told me I could appeal if I wanted. 

We've been forced to pay for this medication OOP. One vial lasts about three and a half days. To say I'm stressed about the price is an understatement. I'm not sure whether it's worth it to appeal to the insurance company as I've been through the process before without success. This expense is really unexpected for us.  

Things have been stressful. I've been so scared and anxious. I've had three early miscarriages. I need certain medications to sustain a pregnancy and I wasn't on them initially. We want to get excited about this amazing news, but we still are having a hard time. 

Starting the neupogen meant stopping breastfeeding. I wasn't planning to stop as suddenly, but was in the process of gradually weaning the girls. I wanted it to be more on their terms, but I stopped because it wasn't safe to continue. That's been another tough thing I've been dealing with emotionally. 

We've also found out that two sets of good friends will be moving in the next few months. 

I guess you could say we were trying to get pregnant... sort of.  We really didn't think it would happen, but said we'd be thrilled if it did. I knew my cycles were long and things weren't looking too good for it happening without assistance. We had talked about going back to Dr. B in the fall around the time the girls turned two.  

I finally scheduled an ultrasound with Dr. B for next Monday, February 9th. Based on my timing, I will be 6w3d. I was so scared to schedule anything. I'm still terrified to go all that way and receive anything but positive news. 

I've been in the early stages of pregnancy unsuccessfully more times than successfully. Twice I felt so positive and optimistic between my positive betas and ultrasounds only to get devastating news at an ultrasound appointment. I can't let myself feel that disappointment again. 

That's the hard part about all of this. I so badly wanted to be able to experience pregnancy like a normal fertile person. I'm quickly realizing that will never be the case. Someone who hasn't experienced loss can't understand the fear of it happening again. Immediately I also had to start injecting myself with medications three times a day. 

So, if you know me IRL and I haven't shared this news with you it's likely because I'm just not ready. It's nothing personal, it's just something I'm not really sharing with many people at this time. I'm hoping things will continue to progress, but I'm glad to have written it all down. I'm feeling ready to reclaim my blog as my space to voice it all. 
    

14 comments:

  1. Oh wow! I can't imagine all the emotions you are going through right now. I also know how it sucks trying to get your medications approved that are expensive, but you need them to keep a pregnancy. I am thinking of you and hoping for a great appointment.
    BTW, you are the 6th person in my infertility circle that became pregnant after struggling with the first pregnancy. There has to be something to all of this!

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  2. Holy cow! First off--congratulations! I hope your pregnancy progresses well- sending lots of prayers for peace, I know how hard these first weeks are when you've been heartbroken before.

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  3. Congratulations! I'm so glad that what you were hesitant to share here was good news. :-)

    Here's hoping that things continue to progress. Sending lots of positive thoughts your way. . . .

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  4. OMG! Congrats!!!! We've dealt with insurance companies denying things too and I would advise to appeal, you never know!

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  5. So proud of you. Lots of prayers, well wishes and love being sent your way!

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  6. HOLY CRAP, LIZ! Wow, what a whirlwind. I swear the pregnitude helped me too.
    At any rate, I'd definitely appeal the med pre-auth denial. Can your doctor's office help with that even? We do it for patients all the time. Sometimes it's just about getting the right person on the phone to approve it (sad as that is - but true). Definitely worth a shot.
    That is a crazy unexpected expense, but at least you didn't have to pay for fertility treatments this time around, right?! :)

    PS - CONGRATS!!

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  7. Wow oh wow... this just gave me shivers! Congratulations! I also echo that I have known so many people who struggled with the first and got pregnant as a "surprise" afterwards. Your emotions must be going so crazy. I hope you can soon find some peace to all that is going on. And sorry about the abrupt stop to breastfeeding... I understand how that can be tough. If you want to email or talk further, know that I am here. We are thinking of starting TTC again, but I'm waiting to get into the doctor to take out my IUD. This is such encouraging, exciting news and I am so happy for you!!! xoxox and thanks for sharing!

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  8. Congratulations Liz!!! Take a breath -one step at a time! Everything will be fine! :)

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  9. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!! :) Oh my gosh! Congratulations!!! All my fingers and toes are crossed for a healthy pregnancy! WOW. Amazing news. And I know what you mean about feeling so scared and anxious. Its true we will never know the simple bliss of getting a positive pregnancy test and being clueless to what could happen. But as you know from the two little munchkins in front of you..it is still all worth it xoxo

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  10. Oh wow! Congratulations!!!! That's so amazing! I'll keep my fingers crossed that things continue to progress smoothly for you and this pregnancy.

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  11. I totally missed this! Congrats!! Oh my goodness! 😬

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  12. Wow! Congrats! This is the 2nd post I have read in the last 2 months of an infertile who is surprise pregnant after having twins. It's crazy and must be exciting and scary.
    Fingers crossed this is a successful, non-eventful pregnancy.

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  13. Oh Liz! This is amazing! However, I totally understand your fear and skeptism toward being excited. I would totally be the same way. Even though you started the meds later than ideal, I hope it will turn out to be perfect timing and this truly will be another miracle baby!

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