Friday, March 30, 2012

Healing Takes Time

Eight days after my surgery, and I am still healing. Dr. F said to tell work I'd be out 2-4 weeks, and I freaked out, and then promptly took only 7 days off of work. And actually, I went in for a half day today. So I was out a total of only 6 days.

I'm still very tired, and it still hurts to bend over, and I'm trying to avoid lifting things. But overall I am much better, and am only taking the Percocet at night, and a little Motrin about 3 times a day. I am still healing, but definitely on the way up.

I am looking forward to our appointment with Dr. F on Wednesday, to talk about next steps and what he thinks our chances will be now. I'd also like to know more about long-term management of endometriosis. I am feeling hopeful yet frustrated, and okay but disappointed. It comes and goes, shifts and changes.

And now, off to wake B for dinner. I'm trying to take it easy this weekend, but we also have some fun things planned.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Books and Flowers and Fruit, Oh My!

Books from my friend Rachael, tulips from my friends/neighbors Deb & Maria, fruit bouquet from my dad, and flowers from my husband's parents. Surgery sucks, but I do feel very loved.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Surgery Belly

Surgery Report

Yesterday was the big day. I got to the hospital (actually, it was the Ambulatory Care Center next to UNC Hospitals) at 7:45 am yesterday and the surgery started around 9:30 am. It lasted an hour and a half, and I kept sleeping for an hour and a half after that. Apparently I was supposed to wake up right afterwards, but I react very strongly to drugs and slept much longer than expected. Finally, I got to go home at 2:30 pm. I spent yesterday afternoon and evening sleeping on the couch, and then in bed.

Today I am still in a lot of pain, but it's bearable. As long as I stay still, I'm fine, but I am also supposed to keep moving to get all the gas out of my belly. The gas is just as painful as the incisions, maybe more. At least today I have my appetite back, and I can drink water. Yesterday I wasn't allowed any water, only fizzy things and Gatorade, and all I wanted was a tall glass of cold water.

My mom and husband are taking good care of me, and overall I feel so happy and relieved that it's all over. My doctor had thought it was just a cyst, but he said it was very obviously endometriosis, once they got in there. I had a golf ball sized one and several small ones too. We're meeting with him on April 4th, and I have tons of questions. He implied to my mom and husband- while I was sleeping- that we should discuss whether trying to conceive naturally for 3-6 months might be a possibility we're open to, before going back to the IVF plan. I'm not sure how I feel about that, and I can't find anything online that says much. Everything is vague and says that this surgery "may" improve fertility, but no specific numbers to back that up. And so many in the support group had this surgery, had an endometriosis diagnosis, and still aren't pregnant, so I am trying not to get my hopes up. Right now, I'm too tired to think much of anything. Right now, I have to focus on healing and getting my strength back. I'm too tired to be sad, and in fact I am cautiously optimistic that maybe we can try having a baby the old-fashioned way again. We will see.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Sudden Change of Events

I am not doing IVF anymore.

On Tuesday morning, which was yesterday, I went in for an ultrasound, hoping to start stimming that night. Unfortunately, the cyst that has been there for awhile was still there, and has actually grown since it was measured in December or January. I knew things weren't good when they went to speak to the doctor.

My IVF cycle was cancelled and I was told that I would need a laparoscopy to see what the cyst is made of. I am scheduled for a laparoscopic left ovarian cystectomy tomorrow morning, to remove the cyst and possibly but hopefully not my ovary. I am no longer taking Lupron. I don't know how many months till I can start IVF again. I will be under sedation tomorrow for 1-2 hours, and in the recovery room for 1- 1/2 hours. The doctor told me that I may miss 2-4 weeks of work. For, I'm planning on missing the next 7 days and I'll see how I feel after that.

I'm scared and nervous about tomorrow, but I will get through it. This is my immediate concern, getting through this.

Afterwards, I am very worried about my mental state. This is a major setback, at least two months, and I think I might be very depressed. No Xmas baby for me. No anything baby for me, at least not for another year. Life can be so, so unfair. My friends who started trying after me have babies of several months already, and all I have is 15 months of frustration, thousands of dollars spent, no baby, and a scary surgery tomorrow. And $2000 of IVF meds that I am not allowed to use yet. It is all so amazingly depressing. I have been crying non-stop and that was when I was doing IVF. Now, I suppose I am just kind of numb. I don't know what happens or what I do when that numbness wears off. I am scared.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Feeling Bad

I have already cried twice today, in front of my boss and a colleague.

I wish I could hide under a rock for the next month.

I've emailed AND called my nurse and begged to start the shots tonight. My period was one measly day late and so now I am not allowed to start stimulation until March 31st.

So we wait. And I try not to cry in front of everyone I know and entirely ruin all these years of seeming like a professional.

I am really stressed out about work, my health, etc. I just want to go to sleep for the next 4 weeks and not do ANYTHING. I am a disaster that should not be inflicted on the general public.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Complete Set of Meds

Come on, Period!

I am supposed to come for an ultrasound and blood work on Friday and then start the stims on Saturday night.... but ONLY if I get my period. Period is nowhere to be seen. I'm trying not to stress too bad, but it's hard. If I can't start this weekend, it messes up everything. The next weekend the clinic is down (weird, I don't really get it) so then I have to wait TWO more weeks and not start stims till March 31st. Which means I can't go to DC for Passover, can't see my family and friends then. Very, very disappointing.

The nurse does understand how badly I want to start this weekend, and she said I can come in even if I get my period Friday or Friday, and still start Saturday night. I might be able to start Sunday, but she's checking with the doctor.

Ideal scenario: I suddenly, unexpectedly get my period Friday night and go in on Saturday, start stims Saturday night. I would have to be monitored during my conference next week, but at least I could still go to DC... and not sit around, twiddling my thumbs and injecting myself with more Lupron for an extra two long weeks. Sigh.

Fingers, toes, and eyes crossed, in hope that I see my period soon. I am so sick of always, always waiting.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Lupron Tonight!

Did blood work this morning again, and didn't expect that I would have ovulated- but I did! The nurse called around 11:45 this morning and told me to begin the Lupron shots tonight! I am elated. I never thought I'd be so excited to be jabbing myself with drugs, but I am. Let's get this show on the road! Baseline ultrasound is scheduled for next Friday, by which time I should have received my period.

It's really, really happening.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

No Go on the Lupron

Well, as I suspected, I did not ovulate by day 20 (what, my body cooperate?). So I did not get to start Lupron yesterday. I am re-testing on Thursday, which will be day 24. I am not confident that I will have ovulated by then either, but I am hoping.

So, back to waiting.

Also, fighting with my insurance. I have received a $474 bill and a $150 bill, all in the last few days. I am hoping I don't owe it all, but I probably do. I will call them again tomorrow.


Also still dealing with work anger/stress re. my trip to Seattle in May and the fact that they are not funding it all. I am wondering if part of my debilitating anger is because I can't be angry at my fertility so I am redirecting it to work. Or maybe I am just pissed that they cut my travel funding and I haven't had a raise in 3 years. Same old bad song.

Good things to look forward to: my next blood test on Thursday, my weekend visit to New Bern to see Larissa, and lunch on the way home with Lyman and Dale.

Thursday, March 1, 2012


I just cry whenever I read this email from my mom:

You, my sweetness, were wanted, planned, and adored from your very first moment. I think this is a case of "quality over quantity." When people have asked me, why i did not have any other childern since i love and enjoy you so much, i say that i had one perfect winner. why would i want to screw the odds.'

It reminds me of the quote I keep going back to from the Chinese Medicine book that T sent me (and then I cry again):

"I can't know the pain you may have experienced in your quest for conception- the disappointment, the frustration, the hope and the hopelessness of each negative pregnancy test. Perhaps you, like me, have felt the heartbreak of conceiving and losing a child. Perhaps, like me, you have given the power over your own body to doctors in the hope that somehow they will make everything better. I don't know why we have been chosen to undertake such a painful journey, why we must go through such struggles to bring our children into the world. But I do know that when we look into our babies' faces, they will never have to wonder if they were really wanted. Ours are the children who, no matter how they came to us, will look at their parents and know, from the deepest place in their heart, how much we cherish them, and how we labored to give them life. And in that there is no greater security and no greater gift."

I haven't even started the drugs yet, but all I can do today is cry. I had a really frustrating morning at work and am very upset about my job (involves some travel funding, but bigger issues of pay equity too), but I do wonder if I'm so upset because I'm already stressed about my medical ordeal coming up. The work day is almost over and I think I might come in late tomorrow, but this emotional mess I've become is making me nervous about when I actually do begin the drugs. I almost wish I could take a few weeks off from work during my upcoming IVF, but at the same time, I'd probably have way too much spare time on my hands to worry then.

I need to keep exercising, be kind to myself, eat well, sleep a lot, and continue filling my life with good things. I'm seeing friends Saturday afternoon, next Friday going to the beach to see Larissa, and my mom is coming the next weekend. So I can look forward to that and try to push work out of mind.

Please, blood test, let me start Lupron on Monday. The sooner I start, the sooner it ends, and hopefully with a happy outcome.