Thursday, July 31, 2014

Weight-loss Check in: Week 3

Weight loss this week: 1.5 lbs (7 lbs total, 13 to go!) I'm already a third of the way to my goal!!

Healthy eating highlights: For the last 3 weeks I've been logging everything I eat and have been making a point to also highlight the times I make conscious healthy choices when what I actually want is something unhealthy. (For example: The other day I was really craving key lime pie [random!] but instead of getting one at the grocery store I convinced myself to buy more citrus and squeezed lemon & lime into my water and ate clementines to cure the craving! Definitely not the same thing but it worked enough to squash the craving for that day and now it's gone!) Seeing those healthy choices highlighted helps me remember how proud of myself I was when I made those choices and how I know I can do it again when my willpower starts to wane.

Also, I have seriously cut down on sugar. Some sugar is unavoidable (unless you eat like a rabbit, which I do not) but I've cut out most added sugar and sweets.  Last weekend I went out to brunch with some girlfriends and had a mimosa which was delightful. The blood sugar crash, however, was not delightful.  About 2 hrs later I was tired and crabby and craving ice cream like a mo-fo. I pushed through the craving and was fine after that but it certainly taught me a lesson!

Exercise highlights: Still goin' strong. I've noticed I have more stamina during cardio sessions and am disappointed now when it's time for the cool-down. I also went up a level in dumbbell size when strength training :-)  Tomorrow I have the day off and am looking forward to a long hike.

Amazing news:  I had an appt with my PCP this morning about my blood pressure. My RE won't move forward on a FET until my PCP gives the go-ahead (which is okay since I'm still not emotionally ready for a FET anyway). When I started this weight loss plan my BP was 144/90. Just three weeks later it is 120/82. HOORAY! I am so freakin' proud of myself. I did Zumba this morning with a huge smile on my face the entire time :-D

My doctor will be recommending to my RE that I move forward with fertility treatments as soon as I'm ready which is great news. I still plan to work towards my goal of a 20 lb weight loss before we go back for a FET though (and am still keeping my FX hard that we might have the chance to be blessed with a miracle BFP on our own [today is 6DPO!]).

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Chance #4

4DPO! I am officially in another 2WW!  Yay!

This is our 4th real chance to get pregnant since we started TTC in June 2012 (#1: Aug 2013, #2: Nov 2013 [IVF], #3: June 2014 [crappy timing though], #4: July 2014!). And this time we had perfect timing!

I am super excited that I ovulated again. When I O'd last month I figured it was a bit of a fluke and my hormones were still regulating after the D&E. Now that I O'd AGAIN, I am hoping that the hormones are are all settled back to where they should have been all along and that this will now be a trend! Eeeeeee!

If not though, I am grateful for this little gift of having another chance (and without fertility treatments!). It's like a little glimmer of hope.

I think this is going to be a long 2 weeks for me.

Aside: I love love love this "TTC Update" picture because of the butterfly. Ever since I read that post on another loss mama's blog about how she'd see butterflies whenever she was thinking of her child, that has been happening to me too.  I'll be out in the backyard thinking of Petey and a butterfly will appear almost every single time.  At this point they really have become a sign for me that Petey is still with me. I love the symbolism of this picture with the butterfly perched there and I'm interpreting it to mean that Petey is on-board with us starting to TTC again. Maybe it's silly but it gives me a peaceful feeling and the strength to feel okay and hopeful about this.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

I don't wanna get ahead of myself but...

...I think I ovulated again!

EWCM the last couple days, obvious positive OPK yesterday... HOLY CRAP you guys!!!

For any of you who have followed my blog for a while, you can understand why I am excited.  I am anovulatory. Or at least, I have been anovulatory since we started TTC in June 2012. I did O once back in August 2013 but besides that ONE time in 2 years, we have not had any chance at all to conceive without IVF despite all our efforts.

But since losing Petey in March, I have had sort of regular cycles! They're still long (last cycle was 44 days and if this is a BFN it will likely be 40 days) but who cares?!  I'm ovulating!!

I am kind of in amazement here and don't really want to let myself believe it.  I joked about pregnancy "curing" my infertility but.....
What if it actually did??

Weight-loss Check in: Week 2

Weight loss this week: 1.5 lbs (5.5 lbs total, 14.5 to go!)

Healthy eating highlights: Since I love charts I made myself a weekly meal planning chart to help me plan lunches and dinners in advance so I don't end up in the position of being starving with no idea what to eat and then just getting takeout.  It has been extremely helpful!

Exercise highlights: I tried a new class at my gym this week: Step Zumba. It's a combo of Step Aerobics and Zumba and should more accurately be called 'Zumba on Steroids'. It KICKED MY ASS. To the point where I could barely get my arms and legs to function enough to drive home after class.  It was awesome :-D The catch is that I have to basically sneak out of work early (like, 3pm early) on those days in order to get home in time to make it to class. So that's a bummer.  I'll go when I can though! 

Other shtuff: It was great to step on the scale this week and see that I am back in the 100s so quickly! Yay me. I have my appt with my PCP next Thursday so I am happy that when they weigh me in I should be in the 100s even with clothes on :-)

This week I put together the below visual weight loss motivator for myself (thanks Pinterest!). The jar on the left represents each pound I still have to lose and as each pound disappears I get to transfer a glass rock over to the "gone!" jar!  I think it will be neat to see my weight loss in a concrete way.

Lastly, Hubs commented the other day that he can already tell that I'm losing weight. Yay!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

TTCAL...after IF

I came to a surprising realization today that I'm GLAD we're benched.  I'm not glad for the reason since it's due to high blood pressure, but I think I'm glad that the decision was taken out of my hands.

Bear with me while I try to make sense of my feelings here...

I had expressed my ambivalence previously about moving forward with a FET but it's only now that the decision has been made for us that I'm realizing I didn't feel very good about it.  A few weeks ago I couldn't think of a good concrete reason why NOT to move forward with starting up IF treatments again so I concluded that that meant I should just go for it. ["Get busy living or get busy dying", right RR? ;-) ] But now that the decision has been made for us and I can take a step back and allow myself to feel my feelings I've realized I'm not ready for all that again. 

I don't want to live that life again. The infertility life, I mean. I don't want all the doctor's appointments and the medications and the all-encompassing thoughts that come along with it.  IF runs your life.  It ran my life for 1.5 years and then pregnancy ran my life for 5 months.  After that, grief ran my life and while sometimes it still does, I am trying to find a way for me to run my OWN life again. I barely even remember how that feels. By jumping right back into IF treatments I am giving it that power again and I think it's that which I am not ready for.

I think this because Hubs and I are still TTC on our own (in a bed, just me and him as is the experience of most normal couples). And I feel good about it! I think I would be okay and happy with a spontaneous pregnancy so I don't think it's the prospect of being pregnant again which I struggle with, I think it's the idea of facing (fighting) infertility again. 

The title of this blog post; "TTCAL...after IF" I guess is really about the two things I'm struggling with: The complicated feelings associated with trying again after a devastating loss; and those which accompany trying again after battling infertility. Both things have scarred me deeply but in very different ways.  And I'm surprised to come to the realization that in trying to move forward, I think TTC again after IF is a bigger mountain for me to climb right now.

Mt Katahdin, Maine: End of the Appalachian Trail and my old stomping grounds

I know I have very little (if any) chance of conceiving again without a FET but for now I'm just not ready. I am taking advantage of these next few months to get healthier and focus on me instead of wasting all my energy on trying to control things I can't control. Hopefully somewhere along the way I'll gain a new perspective and new strength and will eventually feel ready again.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Weight-loss Check in: Week 1

Weight loss this week: 4 lbs! (4 lbs total, 16 to go!)

Healthy eating highlights: I did great with eating healthy this week. I made some dinners which I *hate* doing, but it was okay because it gave me lots of leftovers for other meals! 

Exercise highlights: Tuesday's Zumba class was canceled, which I found out via a flimsy piece of paper taped to the locked gym door so since I was already in workout clothes I decided to go for a long walk then came home and did some strength training. Yay me. 

Goals for upcoming week:
  • 3 Zumba classes + at least 2 days strength training
  • Keep up the healthy eating and cooking dinners!

Thoughts:I'm proud of myself for getting back into the swing of healthy eating so quickly and already making progress. I know that 4 lbs in a week is a fluke and is likely water weight but it's good motivation anyway. I am looking forward to being back in the 100's when I step on the scale next week!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Good news & new plan

Good news - I heard from my RE's nurse and I do NOT need surgery to remove my ute blobs! HOORAAAAAH!!!

So now that I don't have to worry about that, all I need to do is lose some weight and hope that it lowers my blood pressure. I do still have to meet with my PCP for a check-up to see what she says but even if she suggests giving me high BP meds I am pretty sure I'm going to refuse and ask for the chance to lower it myself through diet & exercise.

So, it looks like I'm back to focusing on my health and posting weekly health check-ins!  
Accountability time:

Starting weight: 204.5
Goal weight: 184.5 

I would, of course, love to lose more than that but this is the current goal because the nurse suggested losing 20 lbs and then seeing where we are with moving forward with the FET. Based on past weight loss I think I'm looking at approx 3 months of hard work to get there.

As an adult, this is the heaviest I have ever been and the smallest was 130 (I looked sickly at that weight) but I do remember 155 feeling like a perfect healthy, happy weight for me so I would love to get back there again at some point.  That would be a 50lb weight loss which feels overwhelming to me right now so I am going to stick with this current goal of 20lbs and see how I do.  
I have to say, I hate looking at that number: 204.5. I told myself last year when I saw the scale hit 200 for the first time ever that I would never let myself see that number again unless I was pregnant. Well, I saw it again when I was pregnant and now I'm still there even though I am no longer pregnant. Time to make a change so I can get healthier, lower my BP and start feeling good about myself again.

Yesterday I threw out all junk food and white bread in the house then Iwent grocery shopping and got a bunch of healthy foods. I also cooked dinner last night and made a plan for the next few nights. I am really proud of myself for that one. I hate cooking and for some reason, planning meals in advance is the bane of my existence.  That will be the biggest challenge for me but I'm starting out on a good foot.

I'll do an official health check-in post next week! 

Friday, July 11, 2014


My last blog post was titled "Messy and uncertain but moving forward".  Mmmm, not so much. It looks like we're benched.

I've visited the RE twice since that last post. The first time I met with the dr. for baseline B/W, discussed what happened with my pregnancy and surgery and determined next steps on moving forward with a FET.

The second time I met with the RE was yesterday. I went in for a hysteroscopy and he found polyps still left in my uterus. He said it's possible I will need surgery to remove them depending on the location and that he needs to take a closer look at the pics and video to see for sure. I should be finding out this afternoon whether or not I will need surgery. They also discovered yesterday that I now have high blood pressure. It was 144/90. I have never had high BP before. It has always been perfect or even a tad bit low so this is new for me. The nurse took my BP (twice) when I was in last week too but said it was likely elevated because of the anxiety of being back there again. Unfortunately that doesn't seem to be the case. The doc wants me to go see my PCP to get checked out. He expects they will tell me to lose weight (I'm 10 lbs heavier than I was when I started IVF) and that they might want to put me on medication for it. (No thank you, I do not want to take more meds.)  I will also need to meet with someone in Maternal Fetal Medicine to discuss the risks of getting pregnant right now with high BP as it increases the risk of Pre-Eclampsia.  

::sigh::  I'm starting to fall into pity party mode. I know I brought the BP thing on myself with my extra weight gain but jesus! It's only 10 lbs!  Between leftover baby weight and deep depression over everything we've been through I am proud of myself that I didn't gain 3 times that amount! I exercise regularly and don't eat horribly (both of which I have to work at) but I guess the fact is I will just have to suck it up and put myself on a diet. It is what it is. I can take responsibility for that. 

But the thought of another surgery... that is a bit of a nightmare for me right now. Even just going in for the procedure yesterday was tough. For some reason I felt more...violated yesterday than I have since I first started seeing the RE at the beginning of 2013. Now it's not so easy for me to just detach from what's happening during a procedure - I can't force myself to think about the errands I have to run and what to make for dinner. Instead, I am acutely, painfully aware that the last time I saw my uterus my precious baby was growing inside of it and the last time a doctor entered my cervix it was to rip him/her out of it. Most women have no knowledge of any of this. Most women make love to their husbands, discover their periods should have come the week before, take a test, rejoice, go through 9 healthy months of pregnancy and then deliver perfect babies.  Not me. Not us.

I held it together in the doctor's office but cried on the way home. I am just sad and disappointed and I guess frustrated.  I really had to work to get to a place where I felt okay to move forward and start TTC again and now that I'm there I'm told we need to wait again. I hadn't realized how important it was to me to have a plan and a timeline and something to look forward to. It's so frustrating feeling like you're just at the mercy of the shifting winds. I'm sick of telling myself to be patient and have faith.  I'm tired.

I really appreciate all the love on Facebook from my IDOB ladies. I know I haven't been around much but I so appreciate you still caring and offering support when I need it the most. <3

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Messy and uncertain but moving forward

My head is a bit of a mess.  To the point where writing a comprehensive blog post isn't really possible lately so this is what you get instead :-)

I took a test today at 14DPO and it was stark white.  I don't have the energy to try to express all the conflicting emotions I feel about that.

However, despite my continued uncertainty as to whether TTC again is what will help move me out of this low place or if finding a way to move out of this on my own before TTCAL is the better plan, I've decided I am sick of feeling unsure and afraid. I am an action-oriented person so I am taking action: Hubs and I are meeting with the RE on Thursday to start the process for FET #1.  In the last week I had all my medical records from the pregnancy and D&E (from my OB, Periontologist and Operating Dr [3 different hospitals])  sent to the RE's office and have secured another 6 months of referrals from my PCP.

Ready or not, here we come.