Sunday, May 21, 2017

Begin at the Beginning....Again.

Previously on Self-Made Motherhood Blog, our heroine was peeing on all the sticks trying to figure out exactly when she would ovulate so she could figure out exactly when to inseminate.  Long story short: Nothing came of it.  

Moving on.  So, after that (was that January?), I took February off to collect some finances, etc. I went for it again in March, taking Clomid again, with nothing to show for it.  March was my fourth Clomid cycle and, judging by my very sparse cm of any kind the whole cycle, I concluded that, even if the Clomid was giving me decent eggs, it was also thinning my lining to the point where nothing could stick even if it wanted to.  My 41st birthday was coming up soon (tick-tock! get a baby in there already, right???).  I did a ton of research and reading and decided I wanted to switch to Femara/Letrozol.  From everything I'd read (both actual scientific studies and anecdotes), women who don't respond well to Clomid sometimes respond better (and get pregnant) with Femara.  Plus, Femara doesn't have the side effect of thinning the uterine lining.  I was somehow able to snag an appointment with my gyno on March 31st (exactly one week before my birthday).  I was on cd3 and eager to get on the Femara in time to do an insem for that cycle (coincidentally ovulating sometime over my birthday weekend).  PLOT TWIST!  My gyno said she didn't prescribe Femara because, in her opinion, it requires monitoring and she doesn't do that kind of close monitoring.  I cried for just a second, but then mentally resolved to just go for it drug-free for April cycle anyway (I kept that to myself).  She referred me out to a new RE (I'd told her how I'd been treated at my first RE and she said she wasn't really surprised because they're such a big practice, they can pick and choose their patients and focus all their energy on their IVF success rates. Anyone that doesn't fall in line with their program is a necessary casualty).  The one thing I did like about my former, crappy, rude RE was that they had early morning monitoring hours starting at 6:30am, so I could go in for blood work or whatever and still make it to work on time. I was worried that this new place might not be so accommodating to my work scheduling needs.  I made the appointment anyway (figuring if I got pregnant with April cycle, then they could confirm and monitor.  If not, then we could talk next steps). 
Side note: I did snag this extremely dope video of my donor's swimmers swimming like crazy (so I think we can definitively say my un-pregnant-ness from January and going forward is a me-problem and not a him-problem).  I mean, LOOK AT'EM GO!!!

Obviously I'm not pregnant, so we talked about next steps at my May 5th appointment.  The new RE seemed very straightforward, but warm.  Didn't seem to be drawing any hard conclusions about my state of health based on my weight alone (it's always nice to not be stereotyped for being both Black and overweight at the same time).  I told her about my hopes to try out Femara.  She really feels like it's a lateral move from Clomid and doesn't think it will do me any good (she'll go forward with it if that's what I want, but it's not what she is advising).  She suggested injectable FSH with monitoring for egg development/size and a trigger shot, followed with in-clinic IUI.  I let her know that, because of my job, I can't do a lot of monitoring appointments unless I can be in and out in time to get to work (from Newark, as opposed to old, crappy RE that was very conveniently situated in West Orange).  She said she'll work with me in whatever capacity makes me most comfortable, but she has to tell me her best recommendations.  She also suggested doing a laparoscopy to check for endometriosis, or any other adhesions that might possibly be blocking an ovulated egg or a fertilized one from entering the fallopian tubes.  She said we could go forward with the FSH for a cycle and do the lap if I didn't get pregnant, OR do the lap first and then proceed with the FSH if they didn't find anything.  It was a lot to think about to say the least.  Next came "the exam". SUPERFUNTIMEZ!  Who doesn't love a transvaginal ultrasound?  Am I right?  My AFC (antral follicle count) is definitely down from where it was last year this time (I think I had 15 total last year.  This year closer to 10).  There's the same fibroid in the back wall of my uterus, but on the outside and not obstructing anything.  PLOT TWIST!  She found another fibroid in there and couldn't tell if it was inside or outside.  And a third "something" near the bottom of my uterus that could be a fibroid, or could be just a little flap of endometrium waiting to get shed with my period (since I'd just ovulated a couple days before).  In order to tell, she'll need to do a saline sonogram, which is like an HSG.  HSG uses blue dye and takes an x-ray of your uterus and tubes to see if everything flows out how it's supposed to.  Saline sonogram uses saline (hence the name) to fill up the uterus and tubes so that the doc can get a better 3D image of the topography of the uterus (letting her know if that fibroid is inside or outside, for instance).  They both have the advantage of flushing out the tubes (if there's no major blockage and the tubes are, in fact, flushable), possibly clearing the path for fertilization and implantation to happen.  

So....because my cycle is like clockwork, I called ahead of its arrival to schedule the saline sonogram for the 22nd (a Monday, not the most convenient day for me, but it's all they had within my window - it has to be done after menses, but before ovulation) at 11:30am (a decidedly inconvenient time of day for me to need to disappear from work).  I finally had to come (partially) clean at work.  I decided on an email to my lady boss (because talking about my uterus isn't a conversation I really ever want to have with my guy boss).  I told her about the appointment time I needed off on Monday (which was still two weeks away at the time).  And then I explained that once you hit 40 and haven't used your uterus for anything, everyone is pretty sure it's going to turn against you (which is generally true).  Mine isn't (at least we don't think so), but I do have a couple of suspicious fibroids that they'd like to get a better look at to see if there's anything going on (which is true).  And said that the reason I'm doing so many appointments is because I had to be referred out to a specialist (which is true), and that we want to do all of the tests and screenings before the Turnip in Chief and his cronies in DC make having health insurance a non-option for me (which is also true for me - I really don't think the doctors care at all  as long as they're getting paid).  So, I told her everything except for the trying to get knocked up part.  Bless her, she was really great about it and just wants me to make sure I'm "getting the care that [I] need", and even offered to discuss them providing healthcare or getting some kind of healthcare deduction through work, etc (I adore this work fam so much y'all. I really do).

So!  That brings us up to the present.  I have my saline sonogram tomorrow (and probably also bloodwork because I was so dehydrated at the last appointment that they couldn't find a vein - and oh, how they tried! Ouch!).  Hopefully, all fibroids are outside the uterus and not interfering with anything baby-making related (and also that the last suspicious something is gone, flushed out with my period).  Hopefully the tubes are all clear.  Directly after the appointment, I'm going to call The Bank to schedule shipment of one vial to arrive on Wednesday (cd11), so I'll be ready for ovulation with my newly flushed out tubes.  

Fingers crossed!  Stay tuned....

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Is This Thing On?

When last we left our heroine, super spermcicles had arrived from MSB and all she had to do was laze about all weekend and obsessively pee on test sticks to know when ovulation was approaching.  And she did.  All weekend.  And the dip strip tests went from light to darker and back to lighter again.  And the digital tests were all definitively negative. Like this.
Light, lighter, light, getting
darker, darker, nearly there...
NOPE! Back to light again!

By the time Monday rolled around, she began to despair for two reasons: First, she was on the edge of running through a box of twenty digital test sticks.  Second, the cryotank was supposed to be returned by Wednesday, and ovulation was nowhere in sight....

Of course I freaked out a bit.  Posted this photo to my ttc group to get opinions, or at least have someone to freak out with me.  Bless their hearts, they talked me down.  Don't insem! Don't do it! Wait for that damn smiley face!  *sigh* I really needed that.  I stopped freaking out.  I went online to buy some more digital OPK's, and discovered that the bigger (cheaper per stick) box of refill sticks for the Clearblue monitor fit and work with their digital OPK's as long as you still have the holder/tester.  Thank the heavens for Amazon Prime and one day shipping because I rationed out the few sticks I had left to get through the workday on Tuesday and came home to claim the box of refills in my mailbox Tuesday night.  And not a moment too soon!  I tested at 7pm before leaving work and pulled up another negative, but then I tested again at 10pm at home and got that smiley face!!!  Whew! Yay! My uterus isn't broken. After all this suspense though, Clomid better ovulate me the most perfect egg that the universe has ever seen.  For serious.  So, now it's on for insem #LuckyNumber13.  A friend in my ttc group (the one that just gave birth to her third baby conceived via home insem with frozen sperm) suggested I do 22hrs and 32hrs post first OPK+.  So the plan is to cancel my ASL lesson, rush home from work, start the thawing process and insem by 8pm-ish tonight (Wednesday).

That's happening RIGHT NOW! Insem at 8pm, then sleep and get up at 5am to thaw the second vial for insem at 6am.  I'll have about 30 minutes to lay around with my hips up before I have to get ready for work.  THIS IS SO EXCITING!!!

Stay tuned........

Thursday, January 19, 2017

The Eagle Has Landed...

Minor Update:  My spermcicles have arrived from Midwest.  The shipper was a cardboard box (which I prefer) with the words "BIOLOGICAL SHIPPER" in large block print on four sides (I was less enthused with that part). didn't say Midwest Sperm Bank or MSB on it anywhere (and I liked that a LOT. Score one over MCB already.).  I had a boatload of paperwork in with the nitro tank.  It seems they actually take all orders over the phone and write everything out by hand.  I'd be mad about them being a bit behind the times on that one, but I'm too busy being grateful that they have more than reasonable prices and very high sperm counts/motility with all their donors. I'm just waiting to ovulate.  I'm low-key hoping it might happen Monday morning so that I can insem at my leisure late Sunday night.

Stay tuned...

Saturday, January 14, 2017

"Friday the 13th" or "Lucky 13"? Hmmm....Hard To Say....

I'll spare you the details and just let you know up front that my September insem did not result in a pregnancy of any kind, but I didn't feel any type of way, so I didn't really think it would by the end of the tww.

Aaaaannnnnyhooooo....Here we are.  This week has been insane, logistics-wise, and today was particularly frustrating and tear-inducing.  It was only just a moment ago when I sat down to write this that I realized it's Friday the 13th.  (The Universe clearly got jokes.)  Okay, so I told you about my awesome new gynecologist.  After I didn't get knocked up in September, it was holiday after holiday, and I didn't want the stress of ttc again.  Also, after having used two vials for that insem, I didn't have the capital to ttc again before Holiday Bonus Season. So, I chilled.  I saw my family for both Thanksgiving AND Christmas (I know, I'm so brave, right?!).  For Christmas, I bought myself another 3-month subscription to The Bank's database so I could have full access to all information on all of their donors.  I was on the hunt for a potential new bachelor.  I found TWO new donors that I liked a lot (and Indian guy and a Black guy).  I decided to go with the Black guy and move forward for a January insem.  Start the new year off with a bang, right?  WRONG!  I had a follow-up appointment with my gynecologist on January 6th (a Friday).  I needed another Metformin Rx, and also wanted to get a higher dose of Clomid (my September cycle I was on 100mg and didn't feel much going on. When I looked over my medical records, I'd been on 200mg when I did the IUI in Thailand in 2012).  Now, I'd just spent the afternoon wistfully looking over my prospective new bachelor's profile and info, waiting for this gynecologist visit to get the go-ahead before putting the order in.  I got home on Friday evening and went online to put in the order....THEY RAISED THE PRICES BY MORE THAN $100 PER VIAL.  WHAT IN THE ENTIRE FUUUUUUUCK???  I'd been on the site quite a bit since I'd gotten the 3-month subscription and didn't see anything about raising prices anywhere.  And I know they were still normal prices on that Thursday, but sometime after the close of business on Friday, the price hike went into effect and I was screwed.

I was in full-on panic mode.  There was just no way for me to afford insem with even just one vial in January and still have anything leftover to try again the next month, or put something in storage for a potential sibling if I did get knocked up.  I Googled prodigiously and asked around on the FertilityFriend home insem message board, and I was pointed toward Midwest Sperm Bank (MSB) as being very affordable.  Looking at their site, I wasn't that jazzed about my prospects.  They had a short list of donors and almost all of them "Caucasian".  On top of that, many of the donors didn't have any photos of any kind available (not childhood, nor adult). They had exactly ONE Black donor, and one mixed race (biracial Black & white) donor.  I spent $5 to get the long profile of the Black donor, then realized that he also had a childhood photo and audio interview available for purchase.  That was unexpectedly good.  I wasn't sure what their whole registration process was like or what medical hoops I might have to jump through yet though, so I decided to wait until I'd made contact and had a few questions answered before spending more money. Things were looking more promising though.  While I was looking for contact info to ask about which forms my doctor would need to sign if I were doing home insem instead of clinical, I noticed something on their front page.  There were four donors on sale during the month of January...and the lone Black donor was one of them!  I could get one vial for $375 or two vials for $600.  Hell of a deal.  Naturally, I was immediately suspicious.  I  mean, what if they were on sale so cheap because he had a low sperm count/motility and you need to buy a bunch just to up the motility percentages for each insem?  Didn't want to take any chances.  I sent a couple of inquiries through their online inquiry request form.

When Monday rolled around (and my cycle started) and I still hadn't heard from them, I emailed them directly (as opposed to using the online form) and went into more detail with my questions.  Instead of just answering my questions via e-mail, they responded on Monday night (via e-mail) that I should call.  Grrrr...If I had time to be on this phone to get an immediate answer don't you think I would???  So frustrating.  I put that on the back burner and called the pharmacy to see if my Clomid Rx was ready.  They didn't have a new Rx in the system.  WHAT???  Greeeeaaaaat!  More bullshit.  Just what I needed.  Called the doc's office to check up on it.  Apparently the fax didn't go through on Friday and no one had bothered to re-send it.  Niiiiice.  She re-faxed it right away and it went through.  Called the pharmacy a few hours later.  They now had the new Rx, but they'd call me when it was ready for pick-up.  They were waiting on insurance approval.  Swell.

Tuesday came around and I had to make it my mission to somehow get someone from MSB on the phone to answer my questions so that I could get this show on the road.  Thankfully, I got both work babies down for naptime in a timely manner (and neither of their parents were working from home that day), so I called as soon as I came down from their bedrooms.  The person I spoke with was lovely, but it was as if my e-mail hadn't been read at all.  Fine.  I laid out my questions about the documents needed and got satisfactory answers to my questions about the donor himself.  Though they have several forms under the "Printed Forms For Physician" menu, my doctor only needed to fill out one short form in order for me to purchase spermcicles to inseminate myself with at home.  I hung up with MSB & called my gyno office right away.  I explained my situation and that my cycle had already started and that I needed the doc's signature on this form in order to get my samples on time to inseminate this cycle.  She gave me a fax number.  I asked if I could e-mail it instead.  She gave me an e-mail (why isn't e-mail the default in 2017? c'mon, people!).  I downloaded the form to my phone and saved my printed name at the top.  Then I emailed it to the doc's office at 3pm on the dot.  Pleased that I'd gotten all that taken care of, I logged on to The Bank's site and purchased the rest of the available info on my donor (childhood photo & audio interview).  He had five or six childhood photos (cute kid) and his audio interview was nice.  Later that night, I got a call from the pharmacy that my Clomid Rx was ready to pick up.  End of CD2, and I was getting excited for the start of the new year.

Wednesday (CD3). Didn't get an e-mail response or phone call from the doc's off nor The Bank, so I called the doc's office in the afternoon (after I'd gotten the work babies to sleep).  It was normal business hours, but I got the answering service (it's a small practice and they all take lunch for an hour each afternoon).  It wasn't a medical emergency, so I left a message detailing that I had e-mailed the form with my name in the e-mail subject line and that I needed the form faxed over to The Bank by the end of the week.  I filled out all of the forms that I needed for myself for The Bank and e-mailed those over. I had my ASL lesson that evening, so I didn't pick up the Clomid Rx after work.  No worries though because I don't start taking it until CD6 (Saturday).  Side note: A friend on my cycle charting site said she used MSB, and she just gave birth to her THIRD child conceived with home insem.  AND she said she'd been with Fairfax for a couple of years before that with no luck, and then got pregnant with her MSB donor right on the first try.  AND that for her second and third babies, she did it with just one insem with just one vial.  She says that MSB has atypically high sperm counts per vial (she's had one over 100mil).  This gives me great hope! She's a Black single mother by choice who conceived all three of her beautiful children via home insem, and she's also a newborn photographer.  Obviously, she is my hero.

Thursday (CD4).  Called The Bank to see if they got all my paperwork and whether or not they got the form from my gyno.  Yes to my paperwork.  No on the fax from the gyno.  DAMMIT.  Called the gyno office and got someone on the phone (obviously, they can't be trusted with leaving a message).  Despite my telling her I was e-mailing the form, no one over there had actually checked for it.  Sweeeet! She literally opened the e-mail and printed it while I was on the phone.  I stressed to her that I was starting Clomid in two days and that the doctor MUST get this faxed over to The Bank by Friday (the next day) in order for me to be able to buy the sperm to insem for this cycle.  She said she understood and would make sure to put it in front of the doc.  Stressed, but at least I got through to everyone that I needed to speak to and all would be well.  Then I got to the pharmacy to pick up the Clomid Rx after work.  He ran my insurance card again and kept saying that it should be cheaper and he doesn't understand why it's not showing the discount.  He goes back and forth with his supervisor and his computer screen, then finally turns to me and says the insurance declined and I'd have to pay the full charge of $47 and some change.  Obviously, it's too late for me to do anything about it when I'm supposed to start taking it in two days, so I pay it.  I'm pretty pissed though because my premium is going up in 2017, but I'm getting less coverage.  What the hell is up with that?  Grrrr....

Until Friday (CD5).  Called The Bank and they still hadn't gotten the form from my doc.  Called the gyno office at 10am sharp and was assured that the doc would get to it today.  Called The Bank around 3:30pm (after both work babies were sleeping - their mum was working from home, so I literally took the baby monitor with me to the basement to make the call so I wouldn't be overheard).  They STILL hadn't gotten the form from my gyno.  What. The. Fuuuuuuuuhhhhhhhhhhhck?????  And they could not ship without the doc's signature on that form.  Called the gyno office.  Guess what?  The form is still sitting unsigned on the doc's desk and she's left early for the day.  Oh, and she won't be back until Tuesday because their office is closed Monday for MLK Day.  Now I'm freaking out on the phone because I'm about to start taking these Clomid pills that are gonna mess with my hormones and give me who knows what kind of side effects (as per the gyno's own orders) and it could all be for nothing because I may not even be able to get the fricking sperm! The receptionist asks me to ask The Bank if they'll take the form with just the doctor's info and her license stamp on it.  Umm....prolly not.  But what do I have to lose at this point.  I call back The Bank.  They'll accept the form to let me place the order, but I will need the completed form signed by the doctor before they will ship.  By now, I'm looking at the baby monitor.  I've already had to go back in and put the baby back down to sleep once and now the toddler is looking wide the fuck awake in her bed after barely sleeping. I'm still trying to deal with this mess that my gyno's office has left me with, and now I'm literally in tears.  I just gave myself two minutes to pull myself together.  I tell the toddler it's still naptime and she needs to lay back down (through the monitor).  I call back the gyno's office.  The receptionist says they've faxed the stamped-but-unsigned form over to The Bank.  I tell her that that's a temporary measure and that the doc HAS to sign it and fax it over first thing when she arrives on Tuesday.  I ask what time they open on Tuesday. 10am.  I let her know that I will be calling at 10:01am and every half hour thereafter until I get confirmation that the deed is done.  I thank her for "trying her best" and wish her a good weekend.  Go back up from the basement to finish making dinner for the kids, and then bring the toddler down from her not-a-nap.  A while later, the toddler and I go upstairs to wake the baby from her nap-in-three parts (her big sister's naptime shenanigans woke her up twice, but she settled herself back down (bless)).  We run into the mum coming downstairs from her office.  She gonna make cookies with the toddler before dinner.  So I keep the toddler with me for baby wake up time while Mum gets all the cookie making stuff together downstairs (p.s. Despite my own personal naptime hell and the fact that she hadn't slept for more than 15 minutes, the toddler was super adorable: "Good job waking up, Baby!"  I mean....seriously.  Best job ever.).  While we're all in the kitchen, I get a call from The Bank.  My baby making plans are total secret at work because there are no guarantees in life and I'm not ready to put everyone on stand-by for something that may or may not happen in any specific time frame (I mean, if I'd been an open book about it when I first started, I'd have disclosed myself right out of a job and never moved to HK with my other work babies).  So, obviously I couldn't take the call.  I sent it to message.  I checked the voicemail a minute later and MSB said that they got the stamped-but-unsigned form from the gyno and they could accept it to put the order through, but that I'd still need the signed, completed form before they could ship the spermcicles, and if I called her back in the next 30 minutes, she'd start processing the order (It was already nearly 6pm at this point, so thank God for the time difference between my location and The Bank).  After prepping the cookie dough, Mum took the toddler down to the basement to play for a little bit (it's finished and has a play area with all her "other" toys...and a giant tv for watching Paw Patrol - a thing she only does with her parents because I don't hate myself).  It was just me and the baby upstairs and the basement tv was loud enough that I took the chance and called MSB to set up the order.  Because it was just the order process, I was able to be vague enough for discretion on my end of the line.  (MSB: What donor? Me: #xyx. MSB: To ship Wednesday and arrive Thursday? Me: Mmmhmm. Yes.)  Still figuring out some finances, but I ordered two vials to ship overnight on Wednesday for a grand total of $780.  My mind still boggles at this bargain of bargains.  And after I get a couple of transfers in from other accounts, I'm going to order another 2 vials while my donor's still on sale to keep in storage (they have the first three months of storage free, and then only $250 for a year after that).  And I'm hoping to shift some things around so that I can order two more before January ends.

Got home Friday night and started typing up this blog....and that's when I realized that it was Friday the 13th!  This explains so much about my day. Like, sooooooooooo much. LOL.

Wait, it gets better (like, really better, not sarcastically better).  Remember how mad I was that my insurance had declined to cover my Clomid Rx?  Yeah, I don't even know where the pharmacist got his info or what he was reading.  Yes, it cost me almost $48 for my new Rx...BUT I compared the package for the 200mg Rx with the one I had at home already for 100mg.  It's not higher dosage pills (like 100mg tabs instead of 50mg tabs), it's just MORE PILLS.  So I have a pack of 10 50mg pills for 100mg daily dosage from my last go round.  And I have this new Rx in a pack of 20 50mg pills for a 200mg daily dosage.  It cost me twice as much because I was literally getting twice as many pills.  AND right on the packaging label with the printed prescription instructions, it tells me the manufacturers cost, the cost I'm paying out of my pocket, and how much my insurance saved me.  It's the same manufacturer's cost and insurance savings on both.  I'm not paying more for meds. I'm just getting more meds.  The US healthcare system is still a giant clusterfuck, but so far it's the same clusterfuck and not a worse one than it was a few months ago (Congress is working on screwing that up some more real soon though).

So....anyway.  Here I am on CD6, starting my Clomid (the doc didn't say whether or not to take it all in one dose, so I've decided to take it twice a day in hopes of spreading out any possible side effects).  Feeling good about my donor and my chances of getting knocked up this round (and good about actually getting the spermcicles shipped on time because I fully plan to call the gyno's office every half hour until it's done on Tuesday).

Now I'm just taking deep breaths and working on cleaning and decluttering my living/working space in an effort to help me clean and declutter my mind/spirit space.  WoooSaaaaaahhhhh....

*Stay tuned...

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Diiiiiiiid I Tell You About My Awesome New Gynecologist???

Previously on Self-made Motherhood Blog:  Surprise! (or not) I'm not pregnant.  Anyway, remember when my greedy RE wouldn't give me the Rx for progesterone suppositories and told me to get it from my regular gynecologist (which she knew I didn't even have because I'd just moved to Jersey and gone directly to her)?  Right, well she recommended someone, but this doctor had a two-month wait for an appointment.  So I soldiered on and get trying on my own.  Before the last ttc cycle, I did actually call to make an appointment though.  It was still more than a month to wait, but I figured either I'd be pregnant and need a blood test, or I wouldn't be and could talk to her about ttc stuff.  The latter prevailed (obviously), and I went in to see her at the end of September. First off, she's Black.  This is awesome because, often times, PoC receive biased care from medical professionals, and though it's not impossible to get the same results with a Black or PoC caregiver, it certainly makes for better odds (read this article if you want more info on that).  She was immediately very congenial and very open & responsive to my questions.  We talked and she decided that I may have some sort of androgen imbalance and/or insulin sensitivity or resistance issue (since all my bloodwork from the RE came back normal), something that may not show up in hormone levels, but could be throwing things off (possibly borderline diabetes or other sensitivity/resistance disorder).  She prescribed Metformin for me to start immediately (I was a few days from ovulation in a non-ttc cycle) and Clomid for me to use CD 6-10 of my next ttc cycle.  The Metformin is often used for PCOS patients to help regulate the hormones and also (I've since learned) in some women through the first trimester as a way to stave off gestational diabetes in women who are borderline).  The Clomid is to help my follicles ripen more fully and give me a chance at bigger, better eggs when I do ovulate.  Her plan was "The Fives".  Five days on your cycle. Then five days on Clomid. Then five days after finishing the Clomid, do the insem. Then insem again two days later.  And again two days after that.  Three vials are too expensive for me in a single cycle.  I told her this and she said to insem on CD15 and again two days later.  I started talking about the cycle after and when I might be able to afford to ttc again after using two vials and she stopped me.  "Let's not get ahead of ourselves.  One thing at a time.  Finish the cycle you're on.  Start the Metformin today. Keep taking your vitamins and supplements. Do the Clomid protocol.  Do your inseminations at home.  And we'll see what happens.  This might be the one that works.  We may not need to even think about the next cycle and so on.  One thing at a time."  After the gloom and doom proclamations of the RE, it's really refreshing to meet an optimistic medical professional.  She so the complete opposite of the RE, I'm a bit surprised that the RE recommended her.

So, that was a few weeks ago.  Now I'm on CD4, and on the verge of starting the Clomid protocol and getting this whole show on the road.  I'm nervous, but hopeful.  Guess we'll see what happens...

Stay tuned...

Saturday, August 27, 2016


I'm not pregnant.  I don't really have any other news for you right now.  I may try again in October or November.  Not sure.  Currently just thinking some thoughts and feeling some feelings.

Stay tuned....

Monday, August 1, 2016

Aaaaannnnd....We're Back!

Welcome! Last time on Self-made Motherhood Blog....our heroine was (surprise) not pregnant and contemplating switching donors (among other things). Still contemplating some things, but very much decided on others.  Let's dig in!

Donor:  As much as I like my last donor, he has no reported pregnancies, has some random genetic anomaly on his y chromosome (karyotype variant something or other) that apparently affects 2-3% of the male population but can also kinda suck if you're ttc, and also has a dwindling supply.  Moving on!  I narrowed it down to two back-up donors.  One is Black (child of Caribbean immigrants).  The other is Asian.  If you've been following for a while, you know that I've always been interested in having a donor of color, specifically Black or bi/mulit-racial with a Black parent.  Mostly because I'm doing this on my own and I don't want every rando on the street who stops to tell me how cute my child is to constantly ask "what" he/she is or remark on how he/she must have gotten (insert random non-stereotypical African feature) from her "father".  I just don't want my child constantly being reminded of a person that, apart from donating the sperm that made him/her possible) will not be a person he/she can refer back to for anything.  I'm Black.  I want my child to be Black and for randos on the street not to ask overly personal questions and/or make inappropriate/rude remarks (like people who straight-up asked one of my cousins if she was her son's babysitter, then if he was adopted - because healthy white, blue-eyed newborns are all the rage in Black family adoption circles...?).  So that's my reasoning behind that.  Making the addition of the Asian donor give me pause.  I really want brown babies. Just about anyone in my family who's had children with a white person has had very fair skinned children, so now I worry that choosing a Asian donor (though his baby photo is on the browner side of Asian) will make my child some sort of fetishized topic of conversation for randos on the street.  *sigh*

Then there's the other back-up donor.  This is gonna sound a little weird....I like a lot of things about him, but his audio interview comes off as very gay, but very religious and very closeted. If not for this, he might have had the top  back-up spot, but I'm not sure he's the person I want to potentially have meeting my free-spirited future child in 18 years.

At any rate, both back-up donors have reported pregnancies.  So, I'm going forward (for the time being) with the Asian donor.

Other contemplations:  I did decide to go ahead with the DHEA.  I started in June at a dose of 25 mg/day.  This continued through my June and July cycles.  I just started my new cycle and upped it to 50 mg/day, taken in two doses of 25 mg.  I had no side effects from the 25 mg dosage, and so far not feeling anything off with the 50 mg.  I'm also taking Ubiquinol instead of CoQ10.  Was taking 200-300mg/day until the start of this cycle, when I upped that to 400mg, split in two doses.  I also ordered a box of Pregnitude and started that just a couple of days before my current cycle began.

I ovulated a day early (cd 12) in my last cycle, but I'd expected to because of the proximity to the full moon.  But then, my LP turned out to be uncharacteristically short (only 9 days instead of 11 or even 10).  So, now I'm trying to figure out the timing to have the spermcicle shipped.  I could ovulate as early as cd 10 (which turns out to be a Monday), so I'm not sure if I should try to schedule it for Monday delivery or be extra safe and schedule delivery for the preceding Friday.  I e-mailed the Bank to see what they think and what my shipping options are.  Have to remember to request the plain brown box and not the Tardis.

That's about it for now.  Stay tuned...