Tag: PCOS

Rollercoaster

Rollercoaster

Why is it, every month is the same? Every month i wonder if this will be the month i get pregnant naturally.

I don’t know why i do it. I know we have 0.1% chance of it happening, but every month i wonder. And then i come on, either early on bang on time, according to my app.

Its a monthly emotional rollercoaster, its exhausting.

Honestly, i think trying for a baby turns most women into a bag of emotions! From hope, to loss, to desperation, to despair to guilt to anger.

And it repeats, every single month.

That tiny glimmer of hope is actually awful, it’d be easier if it was 0% chance.

I was due on today. It hasn’t arrived as yet.

Tea tasted funny the other day, I’ve had lower back ache, and so i wonder.

But, I’m likely just having a longer cycle due to polycystic ovaries, or I’ve not ovulated again.

But i hope, and i wonder and i wish. Only to have it all taken away again.

Infertility is hard. Its cruel.

Love, Little Miss PMA xxx

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NHS Funded IVF

NHS Funded IVF

There has been a lot of press recently regarding whether or not the NHS should fund IVF. 

Many CCGs have cut all funding and all but 3 of those that do provide IVF do not provide the recommended 3 cycles.

Funded IVF has become dependant on postcode. The ability to access IVF is now wealth based, not need based.

Ive been following articles regarding this subject on facebook. Reading the comments has either made my blood boil or made me weep…

‘Infertility isnt life threatening’. No, but the side effects (depression being a big one) are.

‘Infertility isnt an illness.’ Yes it is. Something doesnt work that should meaning a baby cannot be made the traditional way.

‘Having a child is a choice’. Nope. I NEEDED to be a Mummy. I NEEDED a biological child.

‘IVF shouldnt be funded as fostering/adoption is a better alternative.’ No. Simply not true. As above, for some, if not most, having a biological child isnt just a want, its a need.

‘If you cant afford IVF you shouldnt have children. Plain and simple’. By that logic there should be no child benefit, no child/working tax credits. If you lose your job your child should be taken away and given to a family who can afford them. In fact, unless you earn £X amount you shouldnt be allowed to concieve.

The majority of these arguments have been argued by couples able to concieve by the way.

Many of the arguments against funding revolve around it not being a medical need…tummy tucks, boob jobs, lipo, all provided on the NHS due to the mental health impact of not having these surgeries on a patient.

How is IVF different? A couple are not awarded funding willy nilly. There are so many hoops. Length of time trying, length of time living together, years of investigations, years of other treatments, smoker status, BMI. Its not an easy option. 

I totally agree that once you have a living child, the funding stops. However if that child is from a previous relationship i do think 1 cycle of IVF should be funded. At the moment, people are being punished for having step children, which doesnt allay the NEED for a biological child.

The other problem people have is, IVF doesnt guarantee a couple a child. Hate to break this to you, but nor does the tradtional method. Otherwise every time a couple had unprotected sex during ovulation, a woman would be pregnant.

There does need to be a national standard on how much a CCG is charged per cycle of IVF. That would help enormously as some areas are charged 3 times more than others. However, that issue should affect the patient. Ever.

The widespread cutting of funding means thousands of couples are left without any options. I was lucky. I was awarded 2 cycles. Used 1 and then borrowed money to go abroad, the rest of my IVF was funded by inheritance. I opted out of my second cycle to access better treatment abroad. That was my choice. Choice being the key word. No funding means no choice. 

Alcoholics, smokers and over eaters all have a choice. And whichever choice they make, the NHS is there to help. So why are infertile couples any different? 

They arent. 

Love, Little Miss PMA xxx

#IVFis40

#IVFis40

So this year marks 40 years since the 1st IVF baby was born.

In honour of National Fertility Awareness week, i wanted to share some of my experiences/memories.

Ive done a whopping 9 cycles. 3 of those resulted in no embryo transfer. Of the other 6, 3 worked. Im INCREDIBLY lucky to have such good numbers. Sadly, only 1 pregnancy made it to term. The other 2 were lost at 21 weeks.

I remember after being referred for IVF i cried. I honestly thought we’d make a baby the normal way (or as i now say, traditional way). We had no idea there was a problem at the time of referral either.

Then at our 1st meeting at the clinic we are told i have polycystic ovaries (but not the syndrome) and he has poor sperm in terms of count, morphology and mobility. We have 0.01% chance of making a baby tradtionally.

Then the wait to cycle. I think the waiting was one of the worst things for me. Youve got your head round the idea and then you have to wait. Wait your turn. Get knocked back due to clinic being full/bank holidays/clinic closing for a clean/incubators not working/hormones inbalanced/uterine lining too thin…all of those were actual reasons i couldnt start a cycle or why i couldnt have an embryo transferred.

The 1st time i was naive. I got 23 eggs, the most that day. But only 13 fertilised. Youre not warned the numbers drop so fast. I got ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome but didnt tell the clinic in case they cancelled my cycle. I was really quite poorly but i was also desperate. Itd been 2.5yrs of trying by then. By transfer day i had 3 embryos left and a touch of OHSS. The transfer went ahead. 10 days later my period started.

Little did i know itd take another 6 years and 8 cycles before i brought a baby home.

I started out shy, taking my knickers off for a scan, WHILST on my period, was mortifying! By the end, id take my knickers off as easy as most people take off a pair of sunglasses when entering a room.

I knew all the acronyms, i was a huge contributer to online communities, i read all the research, ate brazil nuts, pineapple core, avocado, whatever the lastest study revealed. 

I lived, breathed and loved IVF. Im still an advocate for talking about infertility, and now, sadly, terminations for medical reasons and late miscarriage.

I went abroad, to Cyprus, for my final 4 cycles of IVF. I met a wonderful team at my chosen clinic. They blessed me with 2 pregnancies including the one who made it to term. They are like family, and i like to think im paying for thier kids to go to uni!! Haha! 

They were the best of times but also the worst of times

Even now, with my miracle rainbow baby sleeping upstairs, im still jealous of a pregnancy bump. 

I have 5 frozen embryos, im exceptionally lucky. But im not sure i can do anymore IVF. Its emotionally draining, its a lifestyle not just a treatment. Its scary and hard and consumes your very being.

Im so grateful for IVF. I am truly lucky to live in an age where treatments get better every year. Still, i wouldnt wish it on my worst enemy.

Love, Little Miss PMA xxx

Loving him is hard because….

Loving him is hard because….

I have the feels. All the feels. Im besotted, hes amazing, i cant remember life without him

But it took 8 weeks. 8 weeks to admit i loved him, 8 weeks to allow myself those feelings. To be honest im still cautious but my heart swells with his first smile of the day, regardless of my fear.

Infertility sucks on many levels. The months (years) of trying and failing. The agony of a period. The hoops to jump through en route to IVF, the hundreds of injections, watching all your friends have babies. People getting bored of your journey, the agony of IVF failures, of cancelled cycles, of feeling you are worth nothing as a woman. I could go on. 

Basically its shit. And you know what, it continues to be shit even though i now have my very own mini human. Why? Because it hindered the love…it took so long for Little T to feel like mine, rather than me looking after someone elses baby. I was waiting for the bubble to burst. A small part of me still is and always will be, i guess.

Im still jealous of the fertile people, they decide to get pregnant and within months, are. No military planning, no saving thousands of pounds. Just happens or a little cycle observation and bam, preggers.

I still envy a bump. Stare in awe. Wish i could do it without investing time and money. Its silly, but true.

Baby loss literally built a wall around my heart. A wall im still chipping away at. Losing 2 children, 2 (IVF) babies, is soul destroying. It messes you up in so many ways. Ways i thought id dealt with. Then Little T came along and i realised i was messed up in ways i didnt imagine. 

For weeks i thought i would lose him. That he would die. Thats what my babies did, they died. I was beyond terrified to love this tiny human in case he left me. I couldnt contemplate another loss. I just knew it would break me. So i kept Little T at arms length. Worried that loving him would mean losing him. 

That fear consumed me. For so many weeks. Until the fear of seeing my baby, my offspring, in pain. The 8 week immunisations. Thank god for them, not only for the protection they offer but for opening my heart.

Feeling guarded, not loving my child. Shameful? Not at all. Just the way things are after the hand id been dealt. I will always admit to these feelings, ill never regret what ive been through. I truly am a better person for it. Never did i think itd extend this far into my life though…

Love, Little Miss PMA xxx

PS heres a cute pic of Little T

Final Cycle – Day 21

3 days past a 5 day transfer/8 days post ovulation or egg collection

I had another, mostly, lazy day. I caught up with my counsellor, straightened my hair for the 1st time in 12 days, did some shopping (only light stuff Umit, i can hear you frowning as you read 😘) and did some washing.

I may aswell list my symptoms as i cant stop myself from noticing

  • Headachey
  • Crampy on and off, sometimes mild, sometimes strong
  • Some sharper pains in uterus at times
  • Sleepy
  • Craving bacon/food in general
  • Heavy/full feeling in uterus
  • Needing to pee more
  • This one may be a bit too much information for non IVFers – increased cervical mucus
  • Dizzy spells
  • Sore right nipple (although i do ‘check’ it regularly which probably isnt helping) 
  • Achey hips
  • Increased sense of smell
  • Mr Me says im short tempered, occasionally, my temper is now very short with him following that statement! Kidding, he is right tbh, im easily annoyed at the mo! 

Any and all of them could be explained by the meds, i know that and im trying to stay grounded, but im a little bit excited.

Love, Little Miss PMA xxx

Final Cycle – Day 20

Final Cycle – Day 20

Today i am 2 days past a 5 day transfer (2dp5dt) or 7 days post ovulation in a tradtional cycle.

Ive been very lazy as per clinic instructions. Had a very nice roast chicken dinner and a lovely nap just now.

Had another dizzy spell and more cramping which im taking as a good sign seeing as i felt nothing in June! 

One of my fur babies needs a trip to the vets but as he is heavy, Mr Me is going to take him tomorrow so i dont have to lift him! 

Above is an animation of all my embryoscope pictures. Its a bit fast but pretty awesome. Ill also post a copy of my DVD once ive watched it. But im just about to watch Captain America: Civil War instead so itll be tomorrow now! 😂

I have a positive feeling about this cycle so far although im struggling between thinking it might just actually work and being afraid to get my hopes up. 

Hopefully over the coming days ill become braver and even more positive.

As hot as Cyprus was, the UK seems freezing, got my big fluffy dressing gown on already! 

I mentioned Mr Me’s blue hair in my last post…

Truly awesome in my humble opinion.

Have a good evening folks

Love, Little Miss PMA xxx

Final Cycle – Day 7

Final Cycle – Day 7

So carrying on with the 2 jabs tonight. Im VERY aware of ny ovaries now. Cannot wear anything tight round my middle anymore and if i have a full bladder, ouchy! 

I was like this in May which resulted in a freeze all. Im seriously concerned this could happen again but im putting ny faith in the team and in gonal f. All being well i should collect plenty of eggs but my E2 (estrogen) levels will be within tolerance.

Did the last minute shopping today as well as having my eyebrows threaded, meeting a friend for coffee and packing.

Nails are all ready for holiday…

Ive got rainbow toes as im trying to make a rainbow baby and i love paint party on my fingers. This is my latest obsession by the way….Jamberry. I was introduced to it in May and im in love. For more information please click here. They are heat activated vinyl wraps that come in over 300 designs! 

2 days until we fly…

Love, Little Miss PMA xxx 

Final Cycle – Day 5

Final Cycle – Day 5

Today i had to have 2 jabs of gonal f as my pen only had 100 units left and im on 200 units. Went fine, although the 2nd jab was a bit stingy. Think my hands were shaking as i did it.

Headaches have subsided now ive upped my water intake and im ever so slightly aware of my ovaries. They twinge occassionally which hopefully means the follicles are growing nicely.

Had my hair cut and coloured today ready for my holidays! 

Love, Little Miss PMA xxx

An admission

I feel like a fool, after my panic blog on Friday, i came on that very evening. And so far, its a normal period, no cause for concern. Idiot.

If im really honest with myself, ive really struggled this week. Ive found it hard to concentrate at work, and by the time i leave i can feel my mind begin to race, the anxiety build, the weight on my chest increase, until at around 8pm, it climaxes with me basically feeling like im losing my mind. Im serious. Its a bit frightening at times amd lasts the rest of the evening. 

The way to explain it, i hope, is to say I’M out of control, not that i have no control on the situation but that i have no control over myself and my thoughts.

Instead of a train of thought, i have train stops of thought, stop at 1 for a few moments, then race off with no idea of direction until i stop at the next station. When its really bad, its more like a squash ball in a squash court, one that never loses inertia, and just bounces off the wall over and over again. 

Ive not been sleeping well, i cannot calm my mind, i have heart palpatations, have to take deep breaths regularly as i feel like i cant get enough oxygen and im antsy! Even now im struggling to form sentences.

Ive contacted TM about going on the pill ASAP. IF my cycles are causing this out of control feeling, i can at least take charge of it, and feel like i have some sort of control over the cycle rather than second guessing everything. I do want the teams input though, as i know they will be honest and give me both sides of the argument, but this has been causing me stress since my miscarriage.

However, M has pointed out that the only thing that has really changed this week is my counselling homework; exploring my feelings for Millie in the 9 days before we lost her. I havent, as yet, consciously sat down and thought about this, however M points out, and probably rightly so, that unconsciously im probably reliving those 9 days, whilst also knowing how it ends. She’s more than likely right, and that in itself is scary, without thinking about it, my mind is losing what cohesion it had, so when i do actually think it over, what then? 

My next counselling session isnt until wednesday which feels forever away right now. 

This is tough. I cant even write anymore as i dont know how to say what i want to and its making me feel more anxious and squash ball like.

Ill leave it there.

Love, Little Miss PMA xxx

I hate my body…

After i lost Milo, i wrote a piece about how your body can be cruel and trick you into thinking you are pregnant.

Well 5/6 months after my miscarriage, its happening again.

My cycles have been getting progressively shorter, with last month only being 25 days. A very strange and light period caused me worry so on 5th Sept, i tested, BFN.

Well fast forward to today and i was due on but of course, she’s not here. So here i am worrying again

Im so sick of this, i don’t know whether im coming or going.

Im thinking of going on the pill to regulate my cycles before IVF.  I wasn’t going to act on this until January but given i DO NOT WANT a pregnancy just yet, i may start sooner.

Im wondering though, should i be investigated first? Is there something wrong?
Ive never had cycles below 28 days until now, but last month was 25 and month before 27.

I don’t really want to delve into investigations of this nature though as im not sure i could take any more fertility issues.

Arrrrgggghhhhh! Why? Why does this happen? Its so cruel and im sick of it.

Humph.

Anyway, rant over.

Love, Little Miss PMA xxx