Thursday, 2 January 2014

Time to reconnect

Happy new year!!!

A lot has happened since I last wrote but to give a brief summary.....

January - We had our initial appointment with Fertility Associates (our nearest fertility specialists) where we were told that we would most probably need IVF to conceive.
March - Our newest goddaughter was born.
           - I quit my job and started a new one
August - B turned 30.
            - My brother got married.
September - I turned 25.
October - I went to Sydney to spend a few (amazing) days with my BFF.
              - We made the decision to tell B's parents that we will be doing IVF.
December - We said a very sad goodbye to my beloved ginger furbaby who we had to have put down :(

This is all between more tests and being poked and prodded, lots of hospital visits with my mum who is getting some treatments done and general friends and family hullabaloo.

I am still not pregnant. They still don't know why we can't conceive (the hsg came back clear) and my cycles are still ridiculous (up to 90 days) BUT we have hope. So much hope.

We are eligible for IVF in March 2014 which is approaching scarily quick. We will have our final appointment in February where we will find out what protocol (method) they will use and get all the training on how to administer the drugs (a lot of it you have to inject yourself).

I am scared. Like knee-shakey, sick-feeling-in-my-tummy type scared. I'm torn between being excited and making plans for our "baby" and being realistic and "playing it safe". I need to keep reminding myself that there is no right and wrong way to deal with these emotions, I just have to muck through as best as I can.

This year is going to be hectic. We have three weddings for friends, IVF and a trip to Fiji in the pipeline at the moment but I'm looking forward to grasping this year with both hands and enjoying it, after all, this time next year I could be in a totally different boat that is motherhood (all going well).

Tonight I will leave you with two photos....

My wee ginger girl, Nemo 

B and myself at my brothers wedding...

Until next time....hope, forgiveness and new beginnings.

Rachel x 

Monday, 2 January 2012

So time for an update...

First of all....Happy New Year!!!! I hope you all had a safe and wonderful holiday. We had a mad Christmas with the family and then went camping in the rain with friends for a week. In between I was also able to spend a few days with my bestie who was over from Aus for a few days which was great.

So what has happened since I last wrote:

I have seen the specialist. I took a friend with me because B couldn't get away from work (as we were also taking time off to go to the Foo Fighters Concert.... yes, I'm a closet bogan). It was a rather rushed appointment. The joys of being in the public system, not much time to muck around.

I didn't get to my list of questions because as soon as I got there and showed him the chart of my cycles since I last saw him, he said that he didn't think it was just the PCOS that meant I was unable to conceive. About 15 of the 20 questions were directly relating to PCOS. It threw me and the rest was a bit of a blur. Thankfully Rachel was there to ask the main questions and take in all the info for us to go over afterwards.

Basically he thinks my cycle is about 60 days and has given me a pile of blood order forms to test on a day between day 30 to day 35. I did one on the day at the hospital as he thought that was pretty close to when I should be ovulating.

He also wanted me to have a HSG. A HSG is where they check to see if there are any blockages in your tubes by filling your uterus with a dye and then take an x-ray to check that it runs right through to you ovaries. More info here:

To get a clear result (when the uterine walls are the thinnest) and to make sure you aren't pregnant at the time of the scan, they require it to be done 7-10 days after your period starts. All well and good if you have a regular cycle. But when you haven't had one in 4 months its a tad frustrating knowing that it could take some time to get it done.

To make it even worse, through the public system, you call the hospital on day one of your cycle to book in for the scan. The issue? Our local hospital has ONE doctor that can currently perform the scan. And that very busy doctor works in the clinic only TWO days a week...and it quite often fully booked several weeks in advance. So not only was I hoping that I actually would start my cycle, but also hoping that. by some miracle. it would fall on the day that the Doctor was working. And then by some form of divine intervention they would have an available appointment.

About a week after talking to the radiology department about options for getting the scan done (and being told my only option was to wait and see if I got an appt) my cycle started. I called the hospital to see if they had an appointment and guess what....they didn't.

I decided to call around and see how much it would cost to get it done privately. $600. So I booked it. More money than I have spent on myself in a long time. I went to the scan and the dye ran into both tubes so this is good in some ways but it would have been great for them to say "oh look your tubes were a little blocked but now they are clear...all fixed now! Go make babies" So it was a bit bittersweet. We still don't know whats causing the issues!

From what Rachel understood, the next step is to be checked for Endometriosis but I will find out more about this at the next appointment.

For now the Specialist should have my scan results back, my blood results from the day of the appointment and hopefully B's test results (they said they had to do a sperm count to rule that out as an issue). I think I will call them tomorrow to see when I should expect my next appointment. I am also going to invest in some ovulation tests to keep a good eye on everything and see if I am actually ovulating at all.

So that's where I am at the moment.

Until next time,

Rach x

Today's photo is taken of our tent while we were away camping. Yes, I took fairy lights to decorate our campsite.

Sunday, 20 November 2011

3 Day Countdown....

3 days till the appointment at the specialist (how did it come around so quickly??!?!)

3 days to compile my list of questions

I have written down one (1) question.

My friend has provided me with about ten really constructive, well thought out and logical questions to ask (thanks Hayley!) Once I actually have my list compiled and typed out I will post it here so anyone else in the same situation can have an idea of where to begin with the questions.

So where am I at the moment, how do I feel? I really have no idea (still!). By now I was hoping I would at least know myself what I want to take away from this appointment but I still really have no idea! I guess with everything else happening, I have been putting it at the back of my mind to think about later because I have pleeeeenty of time to think about this stuff! Three days is enough time to make a major decision...right...?

I think my brain may explode.....

Thursday, 20 October 2011

So the specialist appointment is looming

well not really...its in a month but with the way the weeks are disappearing at the moment, I'm sure it will be here before I know it.

I still really have no idea what to ask, what to expect or what the outcome may be.

To be honest I don't even know what I want to do.....(its not like I've had months to decide or anything....right?)

I now understand why when I was a teen, people older than me would say "enjoy being young, don't rush to grow up"....All of this "being an adult" stuff is scary, and a lot to take in.

I know I need to make some decisions because it appears no one else can make them for me!

I went to the mall this evening and it was unnerving to see all the Christmas decorations in stores already. Surely its not that time of year yet!?! I have my head stuck in the sand about the impending festive season (with 7 nieces and nephews to sort presents for!) because at the moment one hurdle at a time seems like a lot to cope with so if I can get through this appointment I can start actually making some real plans for Christmas.

 I've been trying to get out a bit lately, going to all the birthdays, girls dinners and of course the Rugby World Cup has provided a great distraction (go the All Blacks!) so that's been a great outlet. I really am lucky to have a few amazing friends around me. They are my saving grace (I'm talking about you Sarah!)

Today's photo is taken at Lake Taupo...because I feel like I could going there for another holiday right about now!

Until next time....splendor, confidence and hope.

Rach x

Thursday, 6 October 2011

How do you make these decisions....

big decisions...HUGE decisions....

Are we emotionally ready to have children?
Are we financially ready to have children?
Will our families be happy for us when I get pregnant?
Is our relationship strong enough to survive the trials and tribulations of parenthood?

Being a single parent has to be one of my biggest fears. I was brought up by my father after my mum had a stroke and brain aneurysm when I was 7 years old, she was 34. I know how quickly that perfect family unit can be dashed. We were a two parent family - Dad working full time as an underground miner and Mum sewing from home as her hobby and a bit of extra pocket money with four kids aged 11, 9, 7, & 5 all happily clothed fed and loved. In what seems like only a moment, we were in a highly stressful struggle to survive situation, Dad on the single parents benefit trying to make ends meet, a seriously ill mother and four kids all in a washing machine of emotions. I had my first job at 12 delivering papers, the funds used not for clothes, movies and makeup but for school camps and music lessons that Dad couldn't afford to pay for. We weren't encouraged to take part in sport or extra curricular activities because these were expensive.

I don't want that for my kids. I don't want them to worry about turning out every light in the house religiously because that makes a few dollars difference to the power bill, I don't want them to know that the income is only just enough to cover the outgoings. I want them to enjoy being kids, young and carefree! I grew up quick, way too fast. My Dad did what he could in a crap situation but its still not what I want to repeat through to another generation.

I guess because I am SO intent on giving my kids a better life it clashes with the prospect of having to hurry things along and not have all my ducks in a row before launching into parenthood.

Is it INSANE to go into parenthood know that you cant truly answer those questions with a great big enthusiastic "YES!!"?

More stuff to think about!

Today's photo is a pretty big one for me. Its me and my partner and this is the first pic of us going out into cyberspace for all to see (he knows I'm putting it up here). So this is us..... Rach and Bud.

Until next time....admiration, sunniness and inspiration.

Rach x

P.S Just wanted to say a HUGE thank you to all my new followers and those who have given me LOTS of positive encouragement and support on here and the TMMB. You are all amazing and its knowing that someone out there is listening to my story that makes this really worthwhile and hopefully someday someone out there will read my story and be put at ease knowing they are not alone.

A big shout out to who have put me on their blog roll which is a huge database of other peoples blogs where you are bound to find someone else battling the same fertility issues as yourself!

Sunday, 25 September 2011

Why is it that everyone else is having babies...

but I'm not? I seem to be at the baby store a lot these days...buying baby shower and first birthday presents for other people/their children.

Its not that I want a baby right this minute, or even this year, but just having the option would be nice. Kind of like how awesome it was when the supermarket started opening 24/7, its not that you want cookies and cream icecream every night at 2am. but its comforting to know that if you need it, its there waiting for you, you just have to make the decision to reach out and grab it. Your in control of the decision. PCOS leaves you out of control. Your supermarket is only open when a myriad of other influences dictates it can be.

I guess because I'm yet to start any treatment, I still don't know what the plan of action is. I want to make plans, put things on the calendar, be organised. I'm hoping *fingers crossed* that this upcoming appointment will give me options and some kind of idea what to expect. Then I might be able to make a plan for the next 12 months or so. At the moment its all still so foreign. Writing all of this down, and reading other blogs has made it all seem that much more real, a little more in my face - which is probably what I needed, the quicker I start taking this all in, the sooner I can deal with it, whatever the outcome is. 

Today's photo is taken at Tanner Point in the Bay of Plenty at a 6am sunrise....I'm hoping my personal sunrise will one day be this beautiful.

Until next time....delight, laughter and pizzazz.


Wednesday, 21 September 2011

The dreaded letters...PCOS

Polycystic Ovaries Syndrome. 

For those who want a brief explanation: PCOS is a hormone imbalance which stops the ovaries from releasing eggs which means that no eggs reach the uterus to be fertilised.

For those who want to read a little more into it :

So from the beginning.....I had known for a long time that there was something wrong with my reproduction side of things, there was something niggling away at me that all wasn't right. We should listen to our intuition more often. For a long time my doctor passed it off as just irregular periods, a hang-on from when I was very underweight as a teen (I was 45kgs at 18). She did send me for blood tests which showed some levels that were on the slightly higher side of normal but nothing overly concerning.

It was only when I was seeing a gynecologist about my abnormal smears that I expressed my concern about my lack of a period (at that point I hadn't had one in 8 months) and he said it might pay to do some more investigating as lack of a period for extended time, other than infertility, can lead to other complications such as much higher chances of ovarian cancer. He didn't seem to concerned but wanted to get a scan to rule out anything untoward.

I referred for the scan which, despite being through the public system, I was seen very quickly for. The radiologist was lovely and when she said casually said whilst doing an internal ,"have the cysts in your ovaries already been diagnosed?" I felt, believe it or not, of all the emotions I could have had, I was relieved.

There was a reason my body wasn't working!
It wasn't all in my mind!
It was something that could, hopefully, be fixed!!

The last time I saw the specialist he confirmed what I had already been inadvertently told, I had PCOS. We talked briefly about the side affects of PCOS. I'm lucky in the sense that the only real side effects that I have had is a bit of weight gain and irregular periods. I have *touch wood* not had any of the hair loss/gain or excessive amounts of acne (other than the occasional hormonal breakout!) that a lot of other people experience.

We also went over the options going forward, mainly being starting drugs to induce ovulation, the main risk being ending up with multiples! But first I had to make the actual decision, was I ready to start treatment? Then and there, in the hospital room with only my trusty nurse as support (she is the same nurse that by fluke chance has been with me for all of my colposcopies) I wasn't ready to make ANY decisions. The specialist said that given the severity of the PCOS he would an encourage a patient who was emotionally ready to start a family to begin treatment given that it isnt something that generally improves with age.

So that's basically where I am today. I have an appointment scheduled in 2 months time where I have to be able to tell my specialist if I am ready or not.

Am I? Pass. I guess I have two months to decide.

Today's pic is a photo my partner took of me around the same time I was beginning to see the specialist. I think its quite poignant, me on my journey.

Until next, wonderment and delight


P.S I Promise not all my blogs will be this long!