Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Chromosomal Testing results

I had my doctor's appointment today with Dr. N (the regular fertility guy, as opposed to the new one I'm seeing in two weeks.)

The chromosomal tests from the embryo are back, and the winner is...

Kleinfelter's syndrome. This is a rare chromosomal abnormality where there are 47 chromosomes instead of 46 - so, an extra X chromosome (so the embryo was an XXY rather than an XX or XY.) In case anyone is interested and knows a little more about this stuff, this is an extra chromosome, rather than a broken chromosome, which bodes better for our chances in the future.

Fetuses with Kleinfelter's syndrome can go to full term and lead (relatively) normal lives. However, it is a sex chromosome disorder and as such, it would have meant that the baby would not only have had some female characteristics as it went through puberty, but the syndrome almost always causes infertility. It's hard enough to be a kid in the world without being "different," but infertility on top of that - (obviously not an issue until much later in life) is something I would never wish on anyone.

That being said, even though I'm still sad to have miscarried, I'm definitely comforted by the thought that this particular miscarriage occurred because it was supposed to happen. Everyone is entitled to their own beliefs, but I still believe that the human body in general miscarries babies because they were not formed correctly. (No disrespect to people who have different beliefs.)

The good news is that according to Dr. N, this was a fluke occurrence. Apparently, Kleinfelter's syndrome is not hereditary so he sees no reason for us not to just "try again." He seems to think that we have just been really unlucky in rolling the dice. I'm not completely satisfied with that answer, but as far as he is concerned, we (my husband and I) should not have any chromosomal issues ourselves because if we did, we wouldn't have produced a normal child the first time.

So on we go to the new specialist in a couple of weeks. Now that we have the chromosomal tests back, I'll have much more interesting information to chat about with her. I'm really looking forward to getting a fresh perspective and seeing if the new doctor might see something that my current doctor might be missing.

Oh, and one thing that might be of interest to anyone taking a calcium supplement: I read in that book I was talking about a couple of weeks ago that Vitamins A and D can accumulate in your system and can contribute to miscarriage. Many calcium supplements have Vitamin D added to them, so if you're taking calcium, you should look for one without the added Vitamin D.

Next steps: Dr. G in two weeks, and then Clomid for our next cycle.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Identity and anonymity

Something that I've struggled with the whole time that I've been writing this blog is the feeling of censoring my thoughts out of fear that I might be "discovered." I think it would be a lot more interesting if I wrote about all the little things that get to me that have nothing to do with IF. See, I have several friends and acquaintances who are also dealing with different IF issues. It's amazing to me how common it is. (And I'm not talking about single miscarriages here. I'm talking about multiple miscarriages or multiple years of trying.) I can think of four people just off the top of my head who are either dealing with or have dealt with IF (who I didn't meet through IF) that I'm close enough to so I could call them right now for a chat and they wouldn't think it was weird. So anyway, there's certainly potential for people to accidentally find me without my knowing.

About a week ago when I was surfing around in blog-land looking for more blogs to which I could relate, I accidentally stumbled upon the blog of someone I know quite well. It was one of those unlikely scenarios where I went through someone's blogroll to another blog, and then clicked through to her blog from THAT person's blogroll (I think.) I honestly wasn't even sure how exactly I got there. At any rate, I knew she was struggling with IF but didn't know she had a blog.

When I found it, I really wished I could go back and un-find it. I felt like it was an unintentional invasion of her privacy. I know she put it out there in blog land, but my blog is out there too, and I know I'd rather not have anyone I know reading it unless I have expressly given them the address and invited them to do so.

I felt really guilty, and I decided to e-mail her and let her know that I had found it and ask her if she minded if I kept up with her story. (She didn't know about my miscarriages, so I told her about them too, obviously.) Luckily, she wasn't completely freaked out (well, maybe a little at first :) ) and we ended up having an awesome e-mail exchange, and then an even more awesome lunch date a few days later. In the end, I'm so glad I found her blog because it opened up a dialogue with someone I know in my real life who is going through some of the same emotions as I am and who can relate. She invited me to keep up with her blog, and I invited her to do the same. Hopefully we'll be helpful to eachother as we continue on our journeys.

All that being said, finding her blog has reinforced even more the need to keep my innermost thoughts private unless they're thoughts that I'm okay with people I know finding. Can anyone else relate? It would be really fun to post pictures and talk about my family and stuff, but I feel like it's too much of a risk for me, you know?

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Hate this part

There's so much waiting involved in the TTC journey, and I feel like there's not much of interest to say during the waiting part.

I've been totally emotional lately, which I've attributed to, well, just having a miscarriage, but also to the hormone drop after a miscarriage as well as (maybe) PMSing? It would be strange for me to have PMS already since I'm only 3 weeks post D&E, but I've read that the timing of when your period comes back relies a lot on where you were (would have been ) in your regular cycle when you miscarried (or in my case, when I had the D & E.) You know I'll keep y'all updated as to when the crimson bitch rides into town, whether you like it or not. ;)

In other random news, I've noticed that the post that gets the most "search engine traffic" on my blog is the "I don't know how to pee on a stick" post. I thought you'd like to know that you can all pat yourselves on the back because people are stopping by my blog to get your advice on how to pee on a stick. Yeah, baby! (Coincidentally, that also happens to be the post where I talk about the "coffee ground discharge" I was told to expect with the Crin.one Progesterone gel. Those internet searchers are sure getting more than they bargained for huh?)

Monday, July 20, 2009

Message from Cary

I like my new digital camera except for one thing. It doesn't have a hole to look through to frame your picture. Usually that's okay except when you're outside in the bright sun.

Today I went outside to release a balloon with a message for Cary into the sky. I took pictures like I did last time for Grey, but I really couldn't see anything because of the sunlight, so I had to wait until I got back inside to see what I had actually captured.

When I got back inside, I was amazed to find...







A rainbow...




Friday, July 17, 2009

Bittersweet

**Child Mentioned**

I'm busily getting ready for my son's second birthday party which is tomorrow. It's hard to believe that it's been two years since he was born. I have to confess that I don't remember every single detail. (Truthfully, the first three months are a bit of a blur!) I remember that my husband was watching the British Open on t.v. for most of my hospital stay. Kind of funny the random things you remember.

D amazes me on a daily basis. He was lagging behind on his speech because he had fluid behind his ear drums (and couldn't hear well) for several months. He got ear tubes in March, and his vocabulary has exploded over the past few months. He's smart, and funny, and sweet, even thoughtful. I'm so lucky to have been blessed with him. I can't believe he's two. (Well, tomorrow he will be.)

The weekend will be bittersweet for me, though. We'll be celebrating with family and enjoying watching D play with his cousins, but in the back of my mind will be one little thing.

Monday is Cary's due date.

I'll still enjoy the party, and I'll still be so excited to watch D enjoy the day.

It will just be very lonely to know that I should be 9 months pregnant, and I should have a huge baby belly, and not one person will remember that but me. To me, Cary was a person and a hope, and a possibility.

But in the midst of my sadness, I'll be celebrating my good fortune. Every day I thank God for giving me D (and T too.) In spite of the difficult past year, I'm really so lucky - and I need to remember that.

Happy Birthday, D.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Decisions, Decisions

One of my coping mechanisms is planning ahead to the next step.

I've already said that I want to start TTC again right away.

However.

Now I'm getting cold feet. There are so many factors. One is waiting for my period. There's no telling when it will show up. From experience, it's been just under 5 weeks and just under 6 weeks. Another (connected with when my period shows up) is the doctor's appointments I have scheduled.

My appointment with Dr. N is the last week of July, and Dr G (the new specialist) is the second full week of August. I almost definitely won't have gotten my period by the time I see Dr. N, but I may well get it before my appointment with Dr. G.

I'm planning to start Clomid during the next cycle when we TTC. The complicated part is that we need to decide by day 3 of my cycle if we're going to start the Clomid or not (as all of you Clomid veterans know.) The biggest problem with that is that I don't know if Dr. G is going to want to run any tests that require my body to be clean of all those awesome hormones.

I'm not good at waiting. Then again, I'd definitely prefer to have a baby one month later than lose another one because of something that turns out to be treatable if I had just waited one more month.

So I look to you, oh wise bloggers... What would you do? Any insight on tests they might run and whether I will have to be drug free for them to work?

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The new persona

I decided to create a new e-mail address so that I could make my e-mail public. That way if anyone wants to e-mail with me without having to post their e-mail on my comments, they can. The new e-mail is Wheresmywhitepicketfence@Hotmail.com. I changed my name to "LuckyOnce" so in case you were wondering, I'm the crazy lady who's commenting on your blog like I know you. :)

Doctors and such

Hmmm... Well, I asked someone I know has gone through infertility and IVF to give me the names of some doctors that she researched and found to be highly regarded. (She definitely does her homework so I feel confident in her research.) She gave me two names. One of them is someone who I have already initiated a new appointment with (more on that later) and the second is Dr. N, MY DOCTOR.

She didn't know he was my doctor when she recommended him, so there was no bias. So, for what it's worth, he's apparently good enough so that his name is out there in the community and he's regarded as knowing what he's talking about. That's comforting in many ways.

I'm still planning to see Dr. N (current fertility doctor) for my follow-up and results of the chromosomal testing at the end of July. Then I have an appointment with the new doctor, Dr. G, in August. According to the person I know, she's "as good as they get in terms of a recurrent miscarriage specialist" and " if there's some sort of chromosomal issue, she'll be able to figure it out."

Here's to hoping that's the case.

Monday, July 13, 2009

I forgot to thank you

I couldn't believe it when I cam back from vacation and found a bunch of comments from people that found me through LFCA. I don't know who posted about me on there, but I really appreciate it. I can't really express how touched I was. Thank you.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Back from vacation

Well, it was a good week, all in all. We had rain on Tuesday and Wednesday, but other than that the weather was nice. I was able to relax in the sun, go to the beach one afternoon with D and do some reading. D also got a chance to play with his younger cousin all week, which he really enjoyed. (They both did.)

One of the books I was reading is called "Miscarriage, Medicine, and Miracles." It's a very informative book written by an OBGYN in New York. I've been taking extensive notes throughout it and will be asking my doctor some questions about what I have and have not yet been tested for. I like the fact that the author uses medical terms but also gives the definition of these terms in boxes within the text. Very helpful, especially for flipping back to look something up again.

My bleeding has basically stopped. (I'm writing this mostly as a note for myself.) It's been a fairly uneventful follow-up to the D & E. No fevers, no clotting (yet) and no major cramps or pain. I would say this is the best that my body has handled a D & E so far. There's a possibility that I may still have some bleeding left to do, but if I remember correctly from the last two times, the clotting was about a week after the D & E, and I'm already 10 days past.

In other random news, I was struck by something that Wifey said in a post a few days ago. She just had her sixth miscarriage, and as she put it: "this time around, nobody gets it." That's just how I feel... When you have your first or second miscarriage, the people who know about it send you flowers and cards or at least call or e-mail. They check on you once or twice just to see how you're doing. Have another one? It's like they don't know what to do or say. The first or second time they can try to be comforting. They can say things like, "I bet this was just a fluke" or "I know it will happen for you soon." Not anymore. No one is optimistic anymore. They don't send flowers. They don't send cards. They don't really say anything. I'm not angry about these things, and I don't mean to sound angry. I'm not expecting cards and flowers by any means, but I feel like people might be going by my apparent lack of emotion (no, I'm not bawling in public) and assuming that I'm "okay this time." It's no big deal because it's the third. *sigh*

(**Just to clarify, I'm talking about people in my real life, not in blog land. You guys have been great.**)

In more "I've been gone for a week so I have a lot to say" news, I'm finally going to start looking into other doctors. I'm not making any guarantees that I'll switch, but I'm tired of not feeling 100% confident that they're paying enough attention to my chart.

Lastly, I know it's stupid to do this and I'll probably just end up disappointed again, but I'm ready to put all of my eggs in the Clomid basket (pun intended.) I'm giving my complete confidence to Clomid-the-wonder-drug next time around and hoping that it will do its job and tell my body to make its own Progesterone and ovulate in the middle of my cycle when it's supposed to, without making me a breakthrough in multiple births.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Vacation

I'm heading off tomorrow for a week's vacation. (Good timing, right?)

I didn't mention this before, but my husband's grandmother died on Thursday as well (the same day as my D & E) so it's been a pretty shitty week all in all. We're really ready to get away.

I'm not sure how "restful" our vacation will be, but at least T will be with D an I, and not at work. That's always nice. D adores it when T is around all day, so this will be fun.

I hope everyone has a great week. Thank you again for all your concern. I'm doing okay, and as I know from prior experience, only time can really help with healing. I'll talk to you all next week.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Made it

Thank you all so, so much for your wonderful comments. It makes it a little easier to know that there are other people out there thinking of me who "get it."

The good news is that I made it to the D & E. The doctor actually opened his schedule to include me today instead of my having to wait over the weekend. I'm so grateful. Last night the cramp (it was really just one constant cramp for the whole afternoon) kind of subsided before bed. Then I woke up at 1 am with a crampy feeling again and was so worried that the miscarriage was starting then.

Luckily, nothing happened last night (except for me lying awake for two hours between 1 and 3.) When I used the bathroom right before my procedure this morning, I got my first brown spotting. Thank God I made it. The tissue will be sent for testing and hopefully it will help us to figure out why I have one perfectly healthy baby but can't seem to have any more.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Bad news

Well, I had my ultrasound today and it would appear that I can now call myself a "Real" infertile. Yes, that's right. My body has successfully killed off its third child in one year.

I had some cramping feelings over the weekend last weekend. I was pretty freaked out, but I was also feeling gassy and bloated, ended up having some gastro-intestinal issues (yes, you know what I mean) and was hoping it was just first trimester bloat.

The ultrasound today showed that the baby had died at 8 weeks (so, over the weekend). Guess the major stomach upset all makes sense now.

The good news is that my insurance will cover chromosomal testing this time because it's a third miscarriage. The bad news is that I'm having cramps right now and I'm so afraid that I'm going to miscarry naturally before tomorrow's D&E. If I do miscarry naturally, no chromosomal testing.

We did learn something new and interesting today. The doctor thinks that they WILL find something through the chromosomal testing. The baby was measuring 8 weeks, but the gestational sac was only measuring something like 6 weeks 4 days. I asked him about the last miscarriage, and he said it was the opposite story. Baby was smaller than the gestational sac. Ideally (in a healthy pregnancy) the sac and the baby should measure the same. That could mean that we have chromosomal issues to deal with which is much scarier than low Progesterone.

Maybe little D is our one miracle baby and he's all there is for us...