When is the right time to start planning?

Here is the problem with being a Type A person who like to plan ahead. It is going against every fibre of my being to not plan for having a baby. I mean I am doing what I can to ensure that we get a BFP and that it sticks. But beyond that I have not even started to prepare myself for what will come if it works.

I know life changes drastically when you have a baby. There will be no time for anything let alone time to plan. But if I start now, when I have nothing but time on my hands, I feel like I will just jinx myself. And probably will be even more disappointed if the IVF fails. I catch myself thinking about the future, and then another part of my brain says ‘don’t jump so far ahead. Lets focus on a BFP first’. But when will it be the right time to plan?

I guess most normal couples have the standard 9 months to prepare, maybe a bit less if they don’t find out till month 2 or 3.  For me, even if I get a BFP, I still have a much higher risk of miscarriage. And some of the studies have shown a loss up to 20 weeks for those with a radiation damaged uterus. So do I hold off on any any sort of planning until we are past 20 weeks? That leaves us with about 4 months to prepare, if we are lucky. And that is if I don’t have any other complications, or go into premature labour, limiting the time available for planning.


So do I start reorganizing our second bedroom now to make room for baby related furniture?  Do I clear out the master bedroom to make space for a possible bassinet and other baby related paraphernalia? Should I start keeping an eye on baby related products coming on sale so I can buy them and stock up? Do I start researching the big stuff like car seats and strollers so I know what I want when the time comes? Where will I store any of this stuff if I buy it? In that second bedroom I just cleared out? Will it all just become too much of a reminder of what isn’t actually there?

If I start to prepare now that means that if this doesn’t work I will have to go through the depressing task of getting rid of all the baby related stuff. That seems like it would be much harder to do than the opposite situation of being unprepared for baby on ‘short notice’. But being unprepared will probably end up costing us more since we will be desperate for things at the last minute and won’t have the luxury of time to shop around and make informed decisions.

Part of it is allowing myself to believe this is even possible for me. But even if I get over that hurdle, is being too excited is just asking for trouble?

For now I have made peace with the fact that this is one thing that is completely out of my control.  If we are lucky enough to have our lives changed in the next year then I will have to rely on the help of my friends and family to get me through it and will make it all happen last minute. Thankfully I am surrounded by lots of experienced new mommies. And I have no issues with receiving hand me downs.

But I keep having to fight myself on wanting to do some preparing. So maybe we will rearrange the second bedroom this summer. At least switch from a queen bed to a single daybed so it is still a ‘guest room’, but will have the room for a baby crib etc. As for baby shopping. I doubt I will be able to buy even one baby related item for myself until well after the 20 week mark. But I might start looking up some brands to see what I like. At least if we are scrambling at the last minute we will know what to look for.





Thinking thick fluffy lining thoughts 

Weekly acupuncture treatments in full swing. 

While I don’t love the angle, I wanted to get a look at the needles in action. Hence the photo opp. There’s also 2 more in my head (forehead and top of crown) not pictured. 

All meant to promote blood flow to the uterus. 

At least 10 more acupuncture treatments before any potential transfer date. 

I should probably spend the time relaxing and thinking good thick lining thoughts. But it is hard to quiet my mind in the middle of the work day. But I’m trying. 

Hoping this makes all the difference!

Another Hitch

Apparently when AG completed his blood work back in January they forgot to run the standard STD panel of tests (Hepatitis, Syphillis, etc. – the fun ones). So he needs to go back in to do these tests. Of course he is out of the country till mid April so there is a delay in getting those tests done.

So I guess it is a good thing we are not starting till May. The coordinator did email over the requisitions for blood work so he can get the tests done as soon as he gets back.

I called AG and told him he would have to cancel the prostitutes for the weekend. He seemed disappointed. I kid. I kid. He may be a ladies man, but he only has eyes for one!  🙂 He was totally fine with it. Just as annoyed as I am that he has to go back in for something that should have already been taken care of.

The coordinator also scheduled us to come in and sign the required paperwork in April once he is back, so now we are finally getting everything in order for May. It is finally starting to feel real. Although, with all the hiccups along the way I am wondering if something may come up that delays us even more…

Matters of the heart, pox and more waiting

A few updates.

First, Dr. M, the high risk pregnancy specialist that Dr. Go referred me to last year, called yesterday asking if I received an update on all my test results. She was referring to the echo-cardiogram that I received in May, last year. I had assumed all was well since I never received any calls back about the test, and during the echo-cardiogram the person conducting the test told me that everything looked fine.

Apparently not. As it happens, Dr. M’s nurse at the time quit and I guess did not follow up with various patients before leaving. Dr. M was just getting around to reviewing her files now and wanted to check in with me. I did appreciate the call, and that Dr. M took the time to call me personally. But I am not pleased with the fact that it took almost a year for them to realize their mistake. What if we had started IVF already? Anyway I am getting ahead of myself.

Dr. M advised that there is a valve in my heart that seems to be narrower that normal and that they will want to monitor that further during any pregnancy. It is nothing to worry about with respect to day to day activities, but she did give me the option of speaking with a heart specialist about it now. Yes please. Better to be prepared now than later. Plus we all know that in Canada getting an appointment with a specialist can take months so probably by the time I will get in to see the specialist I will already be well into an IVF cycle. I also updated her on our cycle dates.  So I am waiting for the referral to the heart/pregnancy specialist now.

Second, today I met with Dr. Go to discuss the Vitamin E – PTX (pentoxifylline) combo for thin lining and the timing of my varicella (chicken pox) vaccinations.

With respect to the varicella immunity, unfortunately he does not feel comfortable starting a cycle until 4 weeks after my second shot. The reasoning is that since the vaccine is a live virus, there are chances that it could affect a growing foetus and cause significant developmental issues. So they need to be sure the live virus is out of my system before any implantation. I reasoned that my CD1 is April 17, which is also when I am scheduled for my next shot, and historically, it has taken me at least 4 weeks to build a lining so any transfer is likely to occur after the 4 week mark anyways. But Dr. Go’s reasoning is that even if there is a chance that we can transfer before the 4 week mark (if my lining cooperates this time), it is too risky. And that makes sense.

So looks like DH got his wish, and we are pushing the IVF start date to May 2017. Grand scheme of things 1 month is not much. But in these circumstances, I am not too pleased to add more waiting to our schedule.

I also made sure to give Dr. Go an earful for the delay in communicating the Varicella vaccine issue. It took them a full month to tell me about it, and they knew we were looking at an April start date. He was apologetic and noted that they had received that feedback on lack of communication before. I also complained that I had yet to receive confirmation from the clinic that they had received the DEB USA shipment of our eggs and our next steps. Again he apologized. Maybe I am just being super anal about this. But communication is important to me and I don’t like being left in the dark about things. I am not sure anything will change at the clinic, but at least they are now aware of my issues. Dr. Go reiterated that he is always open to meeting with me at any point before the May start date, and asked that I call in on CD1 in May and we could get started.

Regarding the Vitamin E PTX issue, Dr. Go said that they have tried this combo before in a few other patients and have not seen any success. Additionally, he is cautious about giving me any drugs that are metabolized in the liver since my liver has been through a lot already and shows some signs of fibrosis (I am just realizing that writing down all these issues with my body makes me sound like I am seriously broken!). Both Vitamin E and PTX do have an impact on the liver. Also, it is possible to overdose on Vitamin E and that could make me sick.

Given the lack of success at their clinic, Dr. Go is not comfortable prescribing PTX to me. But he is ok with me taking 800IU of Vitamin E (400IU 2x a day) for the next 2-3 months before we start any cycle. However, he does not recommend I continue this long term because of the impact on the liver. I agree.


Finally, after our discussion, he said he is still hopeful for a positive result. I am not so convinced. But that is just my way of coping if things don’t work. At least I can say I was prepared for failure rather than be blindsided by it. At this point for me, any success will be a welcome surprise.

And so we wait.









#MicroblogMonday: Expecting to be expecting 2018

Is there a cute way to announce IVF?Microblog_Mondays

I was thinking about this the other day. Each time my sister has been pregnant she has announced it in a cute way to the family. The first time was a cookie with icing that said ‘baby on board’. The second was a picture of the pee stick positive sign to the family whatsapp group (it was funny because my mother had no idea what she was looking at) obviously its been a while for her. It may not be much, but it is cute and it is something to celebrate.

So is there a cute way to announce to our family we are starting IVF? We have already told all immediate family members, so this might be too little to late. But I still wish there was a cuter way to do it.

Kinda like the ‘we’re expecting’ pictures all over pinterest. I feel like we should have done that. Like a ‘we’re pre-heating the oven for our little bun’ or ‘expecting to be expecting in 2018’. It would be nice to celebrate instead of worry for a change.

Actually, I kinda like the expecting to be expecting idea. I need to remember that for the PUPO stage.

Check out more #MicroblogMondays over at Stirrup Queens


Family resemblance or just good profile selection?

One thing I have started to notice more and more is the obsession with family resemblance that most people have. I don’t think most people realize how much it creeps into any discussion about babies. Literally every time a baby is in the room someone will ask, ‘so who does s/he look like? Mom or Dad?’ or ‘Oh wow s/he is a mini version of [mom/dad]!’ or some variation of the same. Every. Damn. Time. I have started to take bets with myself as to how long before someone mentions family resemblance in any group setting where babies are involved. Even when we all get together as a family, someone will say ‘so who does [my nephew] look like now?’ .

It doesn’t really bother me that much, it is more of a mild annoyance. I don’t ever ask the question myself, and I have always been very bad at guessing the answer. To me, a baby looks like itself. Always some mix of both parents’ genetic material. Can’t we just leave it at that? Obviously this is my DE-IVF persona coming through, I just don’t think that resemblance to parents matters anymore. But for the sake of keeping the peace I will play along: ‘Oh yes, totally has dads eyes’.

But what about when the baby is mine? Will it sting more? Will I tell literally every one that asks who the baby resembles: ‘Not me. It’s just good egg donor profile selection’ Or will I just roll my eyes smile and nod politely and say, ‘probably more like dad’? I think it will be the latter. I imagine in most cases I don’t think I will want to open the door to a DE-IVF educational seminar, unless I have the time and they really need to know.

Maybe I can get a DE IVF onsie for the baby. Literally walk around with a sign to advertise the fact that any physical resemblance to mom is purely coincidental, or at least just good donor selection on the part of the parents. Will that stop people from asking the question? Probably not. I know that if this all works, that is a question I will need to get comfortable answering. How exactly I will handle it? Well, I guess I have lots of time to think about it.


Telling work: the aftermath

So…starting to feel the repercussions of telling people at work.

The HR Manager keeps saying things the allude to the fact that I might be pregnant really soon. I’m considering buying a dress online and debating sizes,  ‘It’s probably better to get the loose one since you might need that in a few months’. There’s lots of hypotheticals like: ‘if you get pregnant will you do XYZ…’ or ‘We have [some] tradition when a new baby is born, do you guys do the same thing?’. Woman has some serious baby fever (and she’s well over 50!).

Yesterday we were at a dinner and drinks with some other colleagues, just talking about random stuff, and the conversation got a bit weird.  One of them (a new transfer from head office who invited us all out for dinner, I will call him LP) said ‘you should have kids! they will be cute!’ HR Manager responds with ‘from your lips to gods ears’. Another person says, ‘but who will handle all of our contracts if shes off taking care of a baby?’ (I like that person). HR Manager: ‘it’s OK by that time all our major contracts will be done for this project’.

Sooooo many things wrong with that interaction, but it just made me laugh.

First of all no one else at dinner was aware I am even trying to get pregnant, and HR Manager totally made it sound like I am already expecting. So much for keeping it on the DL. Also there is plenty of work, if I leave for a year they will definitely need a better succession plan. There are several projects in the pipeline so I doubt the work will stop ore even slow down if and when I am away.

And then there is LP. The comically inappropriate coworker. He moved to Canada for the first time about 2 months ago as a transferee. Obviously he does not have any clue about our social norms and what you can and cannot talk about with work collegues. We were out at another work event a few weeks ago, and he got a bit drunk and told me how beautiful he thought I was. Mildly inappropriate for a work event, no? I just laughed it off. And then the comment about having kids. It is all following the same vein really. He clearly thinks I am not too bad to look at.

I do cut him a lot of slack. He is new to Canada and his English is not amazing. It is obvious he is not trying to be flirtatious. It is just his way of trying to compliment me. He is just trying to build a good working relationship with his collegues, but his methods are a bit unorthodox.

This man obviously has no filter when he’s been drinking, so it all comes out wrong and could very easily be taken the wrong way. Thankfully I just found it all very funny last night. I will enjoy the compliment and leave it at that.

But I did learn that apparently both LP and HR Manager are dying to see me have a baby. Yet neither are aware of how difficult it will actually be for me, and that any child will not have any of my genetic features. I think that would be a little over their heads to be honest.

I don’t regret telling work. I am just amused at the reactions I am getting.

So for now, I am enjoying it for what it is. This is that blissful stage full of possibilities that has so much hope. I imagine it is almost like when a couple decides to toss out the birth control and try for a baby for the first time. That exciting, will we or wont we get pregnant feeling. Except without all of the planning, cycle monitoring, drugs, doctors and risks. It is nice to see how excited I should be through other peoples eyes. Watching how hopeful others are for me is sweet and does remind me to keep the hope alive.