Friday, March 25, 2011

A Sneak Preview

Late Tuesday night/early Wednesday morning, I shared some goals that I'm starting to work on.  A big part of that plan is getting ready to be put into action very soon, but I wanted to give you a little sneak peek today!

I hope you'll come visit my new blog:  The Clean Challenge!

I'm still planning to blog here about our fertility journey, life, and my progress but since clean eating is such a passionate issue to me and I wanting to seriously make it a way of life for us- I decided it needed it's own blog and focus.

I hope you'll come check it out!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Unpleasant Truth

Folks, I know you really don't want to know, but the constipation issue has reached critical mass and well I'm just not sure what to do!

My Dr.'s office suggested stool softeners yesterday which haven't helped yet.  I spent MOST of the day yesterday on the toilet and in pain.  It was honestly probably the worst ever.  I won't even begin to tell you what my dear husband has helped me with, and he is sworn to secrecy!

In a desperate moment last night, he ran to CVS and bought me an enema which I was too afraid to use.

Any suggestions?  My doc is unwilling to do anything else until Friday and I'm not sure I can make it until then!  All I know is that I CAN'T use laxatives.  Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

An Ode to my Husband

that smile
strong hands
constant laughing
devoted friend
adoring son
man's man
girls best friend
expressive eyes
commanding stature
caring, helping
latin lover
driven provider
can't live without him
my handsome havienero

Makes me one lucky woman!

Gag all you want!  LOL...  I wrote this as a newlywed and I'm feeling the love all over again these days.

Here's the plan stan

Don't you love google image searches?
It's about 2:30am here and I am WIDE awake.  My sleep schedule is all kinds of crazy these days!  It's a side effect of my pain meds which I have been trying to take as little as possible of.  I requested non-narcotics due to a family history of addiction, I just like to be safe rather than sorry...  But my Dr. flat out said, you're gonna need narcotics.  LOL...  I don't know why, but it really cracked me up.


There's not much to do this time of morning except read The Half-Blood Prince (which I will be doing as soon as I finish typing this here blog) so I thought I might spend some time thinking about my goals.

1.  Pray.
I am really bad about forgetting to explain that I know first and foremost that I have a Heavenly Father who knows me personally, loves me, and has a plan for me.  It is the first thing I think about, but something I often forget to mention.  I had a revelation a while ago that this road was NOT going to be easy because I don't tend to appreciate things that come to me easily.  I am honestly not in control of anything.  He is.  But I do have agency to make choices in my life and I have commandments to follow.  I also know that there is nothing commanded that He will not provide a way to accomplish.  Having said all that, prayer is priority #1.

2.  Love on my Husband.
This may seem like a strange goal, but golly this has been tough for him.  He had his worst fears realized when he had to break the news to me after I woke up from the procedure.  All of this hits a little too close to home and is reminding him so much of the loss of his mother.  NOT that I am dying!  It's just all the years of taking care of her and feeling so much a loss of faith.  He is an amazing care taker and I am one lucky woman to have him as my eternal partner.  This trial has brought us closer and is strengthening our marriage everyday.

3.  Eat Clean.
This is something I've been incorporating into my life for close to a year.  I first discovered the concept of Clean Eating thanks to Anonymous Fat Girl.  If you've never heard of it, according to Clean Eating Magazine:
The soul of clean eating is consuming food in it's most natural state, or as close to it as possible.  It's not a diet; it's a lifestyle approach to food and its preparation leading to health, well-being and a lean look.

Foundation of a clean-eater's diet:
  • Colorful fruit & veggies
  • Whole Grains
  • Lean Protein
  • Water

Things to steer clear of:

  • Overly processed, refined foods
  • Refined flour and sugar
  • Saturated and Trans fats
  • Anything fried
  • Sugar-laden colas and juices
  • Alcohol

What I love about this concept is that it is so simple, natural, and is really kind of common sense.  What I first read about the idea of Clean Eating, I couldn't help but correlate the principles with the Word of Wisdom.  It's a plan that works for me- it makes sense.

4.  Move.
Exercise was a big part of my life for a while there.  I was pretty active up until about a little over a month ago.  That's when a depression I had been fighting off for a little while (thanks to the high-hormone birth control I have been taking) really sunk in.  I gratefully, have been able to snap out of that funk and hope to return to some enjoyable activity after being cleared by my Dr. on the 4th.  My plan includes dancing, walking my dogs, and possibly joining the athletic club across the street to partake of their wonderful lap pool.

5.  Breathe.
This is the final goal and it's an important one for me.  I don't want to become stressed out with all of these goals I want to accomplish.  I am going to take this nice and easy.  Stop and smell the flowers if you will.  Go with the flow.  Hmmm, I think I ran out of cheesy lines with that one.  But you get the picture.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Sliced and Diced

*** WARNING: This blog contains graphic pictures from my surgery.  Proceed with caution! ***

I am super excited to be blogging from the comfort of my own home for the first time in many months.  We have finally had Internet installed at home once again and I am LOVING it!

In my last post, I mentioned that surgery would be happening soon, but I didn't realize it would be happening SO soon.  In fact, it was yesterday!

Our day started around 9:30am and we made it home around 5:30pm.  My laparoscopic procedure was scheduled for 12:30pm, but of course we were delayed about an hour.  It took about an hour, but I had some trouble coming out of anesthesia.  I warned them ahead of time that I tend to be extremely nauseous afterwards and the nurse anesthetist gave me THREE nausea drugs during the procedure.  My first memory is telling the nurse that I thought I was going to vomit and then dry heaving.  They gave me Phenergan which just made me totally unable to wake up.  Oh, I hated it.  I just wanted to be awake and with my husband, but I felt so out of control.

Once I was able to eat some ice chips without gagging and wake up enough, they finally transferred me to a recovery room and I finally got to see the Hubs.  He had so sweetly brought me a big ice water and the nurse got me some crackers.  It took me about an hour to eat a cracker, use the restroom and wake up enough to be able to go home.  In the mean time, Havie had some news to break to me.  He did it with some pictures my Dr. provided him of the procedure and so that's what I'm going to use to explain it to you.

(Before we begin- all of this info came second hand to me by my husband.  My Dr. will go over it all in detail with me on the 4th of April at our next scheduled appointment.)

Turns out the cyst wasn't ovarian.  It was tubal, which is what my Dr. suspected since it had not changed at all in the past 4 months.  He said it was probably left over from the time I was developing in my mother's womb. It was basically the size of a pool ball.

The cyst was constricting and twisting my fallopian tube which basically was not allowing eggs to meet sperm.

Hopefully by cutting a hole the size of a penny and draining the cyst, the fallopian tube will heal and allow eggs to pass through.  At this point the Dr. stated that he expected the ovary to function at about 30%.  He said that number could grow higher, but we are going to start ovulation drugs and spend the next year trying to get pregnant.  He mentioned that there are ways we can increase our odds of timing, but stated we would talk about that at the next appt.

While he was in there, he checked out my right ovary as well.  This was the hardest news of all.  It's hard to tell in the picture, but basically my right fallopian tube is pressed between my ovary and small intestine rendering it and my right ovary useless.  It would require a major surgery to correct.  My Dr. advised against it stating that it would cost about the same as in vitro fertilization and could just cause more damage.  All of the research I've done would agree with him.

As you can see, I am up and about and feeling pretty good.  I basically feel like I did quite a few crunches yesterday.  The side effects from the Lortab are less than desirable- constipation, some anxiety, loss of appetite, and trouble sleeping...  HOWEVER, I honestly feel pretty good and feel truly grateful for an awesome Dr. who performed an excellent procedure.

I had a little breakdown last night.  I guess it was to be expected, but once I got it out I felt much stronger.  30% is better than 0%.  My Dr. will implant up to 3 embryos if it comes to in vitro fertilization.  And even if none of that works for us, we will adopt.  Hope is not lost.  I feel more determined that ever to take charge of my health.  I can increase my odds of a healthy pregnancy by simply taking better care of myself.  I've known it, but I guess seeing how low my chances of natural conception really are have motivated me to do all that I can.  There is so much of this that I can't control, but I am going to do all I can.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Fertility Frustration

I'm back!

I just don't know how else to get all of this out!

I know that I've talked a little bit about how I wanted to lose weight in order to have babies here, but this blog has never really been about fertility. I'm not sure that it's going to turn into that now, it's just what I need to talk about right now.

I started seeing a Reproductive Endocrinologist in late 2009. The plan was to spend the next year charting temps/cervical fluid and try to lose as much weight as possible.

In October, I still hadn't ovulated. I had been able to lose about 30 pounds. I was frustrated.

I headed back into my Dr. We talked about PCOS as one likely possibility and set out to try to get a diagnosis, but a wrench was thrown in the plan during my first sonogram. A large "mass" was detected on my uterus. A CT Scan and two more sonograms have brought us to today. We still don't know exactly where the cyst is located other than adjacent to my left ovary.

Since it is so large and hasn't changed one bit since the first sono in December, my Dr. has decided it's time to move forward with a laparoscopic procedure. Not that you wanted to know, but I'm due for a period any day now. As soon as it's over, I am supposed to call back to schedule the procedure. He is wanted to get it done as soon as possible, so I'm guessing it will be within the next two weeks.

I have mixed feelings. On the one hand this is good news because we couldn't move forward with any fertility treatment or testing because we were monitoring the cyst and didn't want to potentially make it grow. Once this is taken care of, we can hopefully move on. I've had to be on birth control for the last 3 months and will be on it for at least one month more which has been incredibly frustrating. All I really care about is getting pregnant these days and this would be a big step in this direction!

On the other hand, most of the research I've read advises against surgery if at all possible. You can often do more damage trying to remove the cyst which can cause more fertility issues. My Dr. believes there's a good change the cyst is on my fallopian tube since it hasn't changed. He said ovarian cysts tend to get bigger or smaller and rarely stay constant. If that's the case, I could lose a fallopian tube.

My Dr. assured me he would avoid removal at all costs. It is an outpatient procedure, but I will go under anesthesia. I will be fully recovered in a week. Best case scenario is that the cyst is on my ovary, is benign and they can just drain it. Worst case scenario is that it is entangled or deeply embedded and actually requires a more massive surgery to be removed. Even if that's the case, he won't perform it that day unless there's a medical emergency.

You know, just typing this all out is calming me down. I'm not afraid of the procedure really or they cyst, I just don't want to diminish my chances of getting pregnant any more than it already is.

Oh, and the weight is still an issue. I have lost another 13 pounds since October, but I've hit a plateau and it's going to take some more effort on my part to push on through.

I don't know how regularly I'm going to make it back here, but I hope to be able to chronicle some of this. I've been struggling with some depression (one of the lovely side effects of this birth control) but it would probably help to talk about it more.


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