This is why...

This blog has been created to give our family and friends an idea of our journey through infertility and the steps we chose to take to make our dream of becoming parents a reality. There may be a few graphic details here and there, along with some fun photos, but most importantly, we wanted to document these events in our lives for our future children and for anyone else who dreams of becoming a parent. Enjoy!

*Anyone who may be interested in us as adoptive parents, please feel free to check out our link at Bethany.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Spoke too soon...

So remember how my last blog left off with things looking better? Well.....I spoke too soon. It seemed like as soon as I set the laptop down, my fever went back up to 102 and stayed there for the next few days. I was hoping that it was just part of the cold that I also had going on and that it would soon go away. However, as the days went by I was feeling worse and worse, I had no appetite, and I was becoming very irritable (just ask Darryl). On Sunday morning I woke up with another fever and this time a rash covering about half of my body so Darryl and I decided it was time to go to Urgent Care. (PS...don't EVER go to Saddleback Urgent Care'll see why in a minute) So the "doctor" looked at me and said, "Yeah, you're having an allergic reaction to one of your antibiotics" (well my dermatologist ended up calling me the night I got my first fever and told me to go back on both antibiotics at the same time) And the genius "doctor" at the Urgent Care said, "And since you're taking both I have no idea which one you're allergic to, so let's say it's the blue one."

Well....he guessed the WRONG one! So I spent another full day taking the antibiotic that I am VERY allergic to only to wake up the next morning with a rash covering my entire body and the reddest face I have ever seen on anyone (except maybe Darryl after one beer :) ) So since I was now in even more pain than the day before, we had to cancel our IVF injection class so that I could go see my original doctor to get this taken care of first. My mom was over to help me out so she went with me. My doctor took one look at me and said, "This is a very bad allergic reaction to sulfa. You're going to need to stay on the blue pills and take some heavy steroids to get rid of the rash." We were so thankful that she knew just by looking at me what was going on and she was in shock that the Urgent Care "doctor" would not have known that AND that he told me to take Zyrtic for the rash! Crazy!

Soooo after I took my first round of steroids (which was 6 pills at once!), we were able to make a later appointment with our fertility nurse to take our class. She went over how to use the Follistim pen, how to mix the Menopur injections, and how to give the Ganirelix injections. They all seem pretty easy and they go right into my belly. We will start our first round of Follistim on Friday night.

Today we had an appointment at 6:40am just to see if we can proceed with the IVF round with what's been going on with me. Dr. H is on vacation until next week so we got to see Dr. Werlin today. He asked what medication I was on, did an ultra sound, said everything looked good, and that we were still on to start injections on Friday! Yeah!!!!! We will have one more ultra sound with Dr. Werlin that morning just to make sure all looks good but so far we are right on track.

THANK YOU SO MUCH to everyone who has been praying for us and especially my health. I feel a million times better already and have only been on those steroids for 2 days. I'm sure by Friday I will feel amazing and hopefully be at that 100%. :) And the good that came of this, is that I now know I am allergic to sulfa and....believe it or not, I was a little nervous about spending 5 days on bed rest with nothing to do after IVF, but after spending the last 5 days in bed in pain, I look forward to 5 restful days of watching all my favorite shows, eating my favorite foods, reading my favorite magazines, and being waited on. :) God is so good!

Prayer Requests: Please pray....
1. that our ultra sound on Friday goes well and that we are able to start our injections on time
2. that Darryl and I will stay healthy and free from infections and viruses during this very important time
3. that we will be able to add a healthy baby (babies) to our family within the next year

Thank you again for your love, your support, and your prayers and for sharing this journey with us.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Hormones, needles, and drugs...oh my!

So we received the package of all of our IVF drugs yesterday. I felt like a drug dealer as I unloaded all of the bottles and needles. It kind of scared me to see how many different things I will be putting in my body but as my friend Kristina was told by her fertility doctor, "Nothing about this is natural but it's what some people have to do to get pregnant." These drugs and hormones will make it so that at the time my embryos are implanted, I will have the perfect house for them. Then its up to them to stay there. :)

Last night, Darryl and I checked our list to make sure we had every single medication we needed, and thank God we did, because one of them fell out in the box that I was about to throw away. We also checked the instructions to see which ones needed to be refrigerated and which ones didn't.

Darryl is very excited to use the Follistim Pen.... (big needle that will not be going into my shoulder......Do I really want him sticking me with this thing?)

And as you can see, I'm not amused.

But....we are excited to get this process started.

And yes, I still have a nice bandage on my face from Lowell (my lovely staph infection). I saw the dermatologist yesterday who lanced the boil with his own bare hands (well he had gloves on and used gauze but still....ouch) and told me to keep taking the two antibiotics but not at the same time because they are too strong and can make me sick. I wasn't feeling good at all yesterday and ended up coming down with a fever last night. I still have a slight fever but lower than yesterday and the good news is that the swelling of the boil has gone way down. I just pray that I feel 100% by the 30th when we start our hormone shots.

Thank you for keeping Darryl and I in your prayers and for sharing this journey with us. It really means a lot to us to have so much support!

Prayer Requests: 1Pray that all signs of this infection are completely gone by July 30th and that Darryl and I will be 100% healthy and ready to start the shots 2. Pray that our injection class goes really well on Monday (Darryl and my mom will both be there to learn the procedures) 3. Pray for my lovely cousin Arielle (who is also going through fertility issues and has been trying as long as Darryl and I.....she has been a major support through all of this, and nothing would make us happier than to be finally pregnant together)

4. Pray for a healthy baby (babies) within the next year. THANK YOU!!!!!!!! THANK YOU!!!!! THANK YOU!!!!!!!!! xoxoxoxoxoxoxo

"But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us" (Romans 8:37)

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Ouch! Ouch! Ouch! I debated even putting this up here but I need some prayers pronto and this situation may affect our IVF rounds. (Sorry for the TMI...but I warned you all the first blog) Thursday night I started noticing a nice red welt on my face and thought...."'s just a giant zit". And awesome that this was taking place right before we were leaving for Vegas but I knew that I had been super stressed out so I figured that this is what I get. So on Friday we went to Vegas and all weekend my friends and I were making fun of my gigantic zit (who we eventually named Lowell) So we all said stuff like, "Lowell is hungry!" and "Lowell is tired!" (We thought this was funny at the time). I tried popping it several times and then thought it was a fabulous idea to soak all day in a bacteria infested Vegas hotel pool. So on the way home from Vegas (Sunday) I realized that this bump was not getting any smaller, it hurt like hell, and then I remembered the word "boil". I took a picture of it....

sent it to my friend Hilda (who is a pediatrician) and asked if it was a boil. She replied back that it looked pretty big and started asking me questions about draining. I decided I better go see the doctor the next day. So Monday, I went in and my doctor said it looks like a staph infection. She gave me 2 different antibiotics, squeezed the "you know what" out of it, and as I tried my hardest not to cry she said that she will need to see me back on Thursday when the dermatologist is in.
Now....I'm not trying to be "Oh wahhhh...poor me" but Darryl and I are supposed to start our IVF medication on the 30th. If I'm still on antibiotics, we may have to push the IVF back a few weeks and we may lose money if they have to cancel the first round. I'm really hoping since we haven't started yet, that they will be able to push it back but you never know with these kinds of places especially if they already have the rooms, doctors, and equipment booked.
Sooooooo on to prayer request time....please please please 1. pray that the antibiotics will kick in very fast and heal this staph infection 2. pray that the infection will heal with no scars 3. pray that our scheduled IVF is able to go on as planned 4. pray that we will have healthy baby (babies) within the next year.
Thank you so much!!!! (and again sorry for the gross out factor) xoxo

Monday, July 12, 2010

Here we go...

So we had our first IVF appointment today with Dr. H at 7:00 AM!!! And believe it or not, that is a late appointment. :) Everything went well. Dr. H did an ultrasound to make sure everything looked good and took measurements to prepare for the IVF. She also did a trial transfer where she pretended to transfer the embryos so that on the day of the actual transfer she will have all the proper tools that she needs with her. (I guess the tools can vary depending on the size of the uterus). We are slowly figuring out the financial situation but so far, so good. It seems to be working itself out and God is definitely providing. Our next appointment will be on July 26th but sometime during the next couple of weeks, we will receive our calendar with all our major doctor appointments and we will take a class where Darryl will learn to give me all the many shots that I will need. Thank you so much to all our friends and family who have been so supportive! We appreciate your love and prayers and all the uplifting messages. This has also been a pretty awesome week because we get to have my brother Daniel, his wife Jackie, and their two sons Cristian and Gabriel stay with us. We look forward to spending lots of time with them before they go back to Georgia.

‎"Because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead, your FAITH and HOPE can be placed confidently in God." 1 Peter 1:21

Prayer Requests: 1. That we will continue to trust God 2. That will be able to add a healthy baby (or babies) to our family within the next year

Friday, July 9, 2010

In the beginning....

WARNING: This will probably be the longest post you will have to read...but I want to catch all of you up. :)
Three years ago in the month of August, Darryl and I decided that it was time to become parents. Our plan has always been to get pregnant a few years after we got married and to have at least one child, maybe two, by the time we were thirty. God made different plans. Right before actually trying to get pregnant, I found a weird bump in my belly button.

Cool part is....if you actually google purple bump in belly button, my picture pops up, bad part is that after 3 different visits to 3 different doctors we found out through a biopsy that it was endometriosis.

What is endometriosis?

Your uterus is lined with tissue called the endometrium. When this tissue grows outside the uterus, usually in the reproductive organs (ovaries, fallopian tubes), intestines, rectum, or bladder, it creates a condition called endometriosis.

Your endometrial tissue is the part of your uterine lining that bleeds during menstruation. Normally you expel the lining during your monthly period, but if it flows backward into your abdominal cavity and implants there, it can lead to endometriosis. You'll develop cysts, lesions, and scar tissue that will cause the surrounding area to thicken. Some women have little or no discomfort from endometriosis, but others are in great pain before and/or during their menstrual cycle.

Doctors evaluate endometriosis using a point system based on the number and size of growths found during a laparoscopy (a minor surgical procedure used to view your internal organs). There are four classifications: minimal (1-5 points), mild (6-15 points), moderate (16-40 points), and severe (more than 40 points).

So now that you all know what endometriosis is, I can tell you that mine is minimal. However after 2 and a half years of trying to get pregnant, 2 surgeries with a gynecologist who we don't think knew what the heck she was doing, and no luck, we looked into fertility doctors. We began with a doctor in Garden Grove who pretty much looked at me like I was crazy when I told her that I had umbilical endometriosis. We had a bad vibe from her from the very beginning. At the time, we also had some very good friends who went through infertility as well but became pregnant with beautiful twin girls with the help of their doctor, Dr. Werlin from Coastal Fertility in Irvine.

Darryl and I decided to go to their free monthly seminar and discovered Dr. Werlin's partner, Dr. Minoos Hosseinzadeh. After the seminar, I approached Dr. H (as we call her) to explain my situation just to see if she would give me the same crazy look. As I told her my story, she nodded along and explained that she specialized with patients who had endometriosis and even worked with a young women who had it growing in her lungs. Dr. H began to explain how endometriosis works and how it can keep you from getting pregnant. We LOVED her! And we signed up for our first appointment.

We decided after a few appointments that IUI treatments would be the best for Darryl and me. Basically, IUI or Intrauterine Insemination, is when I take some pills (Chlomid) to make me produce 2-4 eggs instead of 1, the doctor does ultrasounds on me around the time of ovulation, Darryl produces a sperm sample, and the doctor shoots up into my uterus with a catheter, and hopefully I will become pregnant. Darryl and I went through 3 rounds of one more surgery to remove a polyp on my uterus. Still no baby.

Dr. H explained that since I was not pregnant after 3 IUI's that IVF is the next step. She said that endometriosis can cause toxins that attack Darryl's sperm while in the fallopian tubes. This affects some patients and not others but in my case she believed that it was definitely the endo causing the problems. For those of you that don't know, IVF (invitro-fertilization) is basically when I get put on lots of medications to produce 10-15 eggs instead of 1, I have another surgery to have the eggs taken out of me, they take the healthiest looking eggs and inject them with Darryl's sperm, put them in a petri dish to grow for a few days, take 2 of the embryos and then put them back into my uterus, I lay in bed on my back for 5 days only getting up to go to the restroom, and hopefully....I will be pregnant! There's a little more to it but I wanted you to be able to get the gist.

Sooooooo here's where we are now. Darryl and I have our first IVF appointment on Monday. We will be doing a trial transfer where Dr. H does an ultrasound and then pretty much pretends to be transferring the embryos into my uterus so that she can take measurements and get a "map of my uterus". The only shocker to us was that most of the money will be due on Monday morning. Darryl and I are looking into different types of loans and are hoping that we will be confident in our decision by Monday.

I am going to be honest and let you all know that I've been an emotional wreck these past few months. I feel like right when Darryl and I think we are ok and life is great, something comes along and knocks us down again. I know it's God's way of saying, "trust me..." but it's hard when you are a natural worrier (like me) and when you don't know what the outcome will be. Our church has been doing a study on "Hoping for a miracle". Our pastor said that there are 6 steps before witnessing a miracle, 1. Dream 2. Decide 3. Delay 4. Difficulty 5. Dead End (we feel like we have hit this mark a few times) 6. DELIVERANCE!

Prayer Requests: Please pray that 1. our doctor appointment will go really well on Monday and that we will leave confident that we have made the right decision 2. that we will be able to finance this without worry 3. that we will continue to trust God and know that he is in control 4. that we will be able to add a healthy baby or babies to our family within the next year