Our Egg Hunt

We went on an egg hunt yesterday. Our retrieval wasn’t until 9:45 in the morning so I was excited to sleep in a little bit until I woke up at 6 am and couldn’t go back to sleep because I was overwhelmed with excitement. I was so excited to see how many eggs they would get but also to get those eggs out of my ovaries. When you have that many mature eggs and more follicles,  you start to feel like you are carrying grapes around. The bloat is real. I had to walk around work with my dress pants unbuttoned on Monday because I was so bloated!

When we got to the clinic we were called back to the prep area and they had me change into a super sexy hospital gown, a mesh cap and mesh footies to go over my socks. The nurse came to give us our instructions for the next 5 days and then went to get our doctor to say hi before the retrieval. Our doctor is one amazing man. He is so compassionate, so caring and you can really tell that he loves what he does and is very knowledgable in his area of expertise. He came in and made sure that we both were comfortable, talked about what we were about to do, made sure we didn’t have any questions and then told me that he would go let the nurse know I’m ready for my ‘margaritas’. During the egg retrieval you are under a conscious sedation so you get a nice little concoction of meds in your IV. Whoof- that stuff was serious, let me tell you. I remember walking back into the operating room and laying down on the bed. I remember the nurses coming over and saying hello to me. I remember asking them what they were doing (lol – like they were just at home chilling and I was seeing what their plans for the day were. Duh.). I remember my doctor coming in and saying something to him, but I can’t remember what. I remember telling the nurses I was mad that I had those mesh footies over my socks because I specifically wore my egg retrieval day socks for good luck. I vaguely remember saying ‘Ouch!’ at one point and the nurses comforting me. Then I woke up in the post-op chair united with my husband again.


When I woke up the nurse came to check on me and then our doctor came over to chit chat. Apparently, that wasn’t the first time. My husband said he came over and woke me up to tell me how many eggs they were able to collect, but I don’t remember that at all. He let us know that we collected 11 eggs!! The nurse said that retrieving 8 is about average for their office, so 11 was an amazing number!

Shortly after I woke up we got to break out of there and head home. I planned on feeling much worse than I did. The only pain I was in was kind of like menstrual cramps, the nurse gave me some extra strength Tylenol and sent us on our way. I was so nervous leading up to retrieval that I would end up over-stimulated but thankfully, that was not the case for us.


When we left the clinic I wanted McDonalds. Mostly, I wanted McDonalds French Fries because salty foods are good for your body after retrieval. AJ made my wish his command. McDonalds French Fries it was for lunch! We spent the afternoon hanging out on our back deck enjoying the beautiful weather we have been having and just sat and enjoyed each others company for an afternoon. It was very relaxing and a nice slowdown to what our lives have been these past few weeks.


Today, we received the call that out of the 11 eggs they collected, 10 were mature and 9 fertilized! We currently have 9 Baby A’s! Not all of these will make it to the Day 5 Blastocyst stage but I have a good feeling that our children are in that incubator right now. I’ve been praying and asking God to give us the perfect amount of embryos that would complete our family so that we don’t have to go through all of this again and we don’t have to make decisions if we have ‘leftover’ embryos after we have decided our family is complete.

Tonight we start a new injection. This is an intramuscular injection with an inch and a half long needle. Yikes! The injection is progesterone. This helps women not miscarry because of progesterone levels dipping. If we are successful in our transfer and end up pregnant, these shots will continue for the entire first trimester. But, I’m sure I will have more to say about these later on once I have experienced it first hand.



Wake Up & Trigger


Phew, what a week. Over the weekend, my husband was able to come to my appointment with me (I really just took him because he promised me a breakfast date afterwards. Joking! Kind of…) and he was able to experience what I experienced at all of those early morning appointments right along with me. I’m not sure if he was nervous or just didn’t know what to say while we were in the room waiting for my ultrasound but he just kept talking about “how expensive that piece of equipment was” referring to the ultrasound machine and monitor. My husband is a man of few words, so I am going to guess he was feeling a little out of place while sitting in the ultrasound room waiting for my scan. But when Monday came around, he asked me if he should come along to that appointment with me as well, so he must have found it interesting!


After our appointment and breakfast date, we received a call that we would be adding in another injection Saturday and Sunday night. The injection that they had me add in basically keeps all my follicles right where they want them. I wasn’t quite ready for retrieval but the eggs were getting large enough and my estrogen levels were high enough that if we didn’t add in the shot, my body may have released all those eggs that we had been working so hard to grow. I psyched myself up for the new shot by searching the IVF group I’m in on Facebook and saw all the horrible experiences people had with the injection. Once I manned up and did it though, it really was nothing. I had to ice the area for awhile because it broke out in a little rash and was pretty itchy. Other than that, there was nothing to worry about.

Monday I went in for one of those early morning appointments before work. Later in the day I received the call that my follies were where they wanted them and my estrogen jumped to a nice number and we were ready to trigger that night. A trigger shot is basically an injection of the HCG (pregnancy) hormone. This shot would help my follicles to release the eggs so that when we go to retrieve them, they are easier to get. The clinic gives you a very specific time when you should do your HCG injections and our time happened to be 11 pm. My husband and I can not stay awake past 9 (at the very latest) for the lives of us so we ended up having to set an alarm to wake up and trigger. Pretty sure my husband was half asleep giving me my shots because when he tried to put the cap over the needle afterwards, he poked himself in the finger so hard that it bent the needle right in half. He was pretty sure he was dying after he did that, kind of like when he gets a man cold (ha ha!).


Since we triggered at 11 pm on Monday night, our retrieval is scheduled for 35 hours after the shot and we will retrieve my eggs tomorrow morning at 10 am. I have tried to keep my blindfolds on when it comes to the retrieval and am going with the motto of “ignorance is bliss” because I know that everyone has different experiences and I don’t want to jump to a conclusion on what I think will be our experience until we are living it.

Tomorrow is going to be such a special day for us now and for the years to come. Tomorrow will be the day that our kids will be conceived. What a big day for us. So please keep us in your thoughts and prayers tomorrow as we check another box off of our IVF journey and are that much closer to our transfer day and hopefully to baby A or baby A’s.

The Lucky One

I often reflect back on how I knew that we were going to do this IVF thing and we were going to be in it together. Before my husband and I got married, we would talk about the children we were going to have, we would dream about our future family, talk about how we would raise our kids, heck we have had a little girl name picked out, set in stone, for a couple years now. Sometimes I brought up the conversation, “What if we can’t have babies?” “What if we have to seek help to have a family?” and when someone close to me had to go through IVF, I remember asking him, “What if we have to do that someday?” Now, keep in mind, we didn’t know what our future held at this point, it was just a conversation. I remember we always came to the conclusion that we would do anything we could to have our own babies. There was never a doubt in our mind that we would ever give up if it came down to it.

I remember I used to get so frustrated with AJ because he would tell me that he couldn’t wait for me to have his children, or he couldn’t wait for me to be a mother to his children, or he couldn’t wait to have a family with me. The reason I became frustrated is because at that point in my life all I wanted to hear was, “I can’t wait to marry you someday” or “I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with you.” Now, if you really dig down deep and think about it, he was saying what I wanted to hear just in a different way. He was telling me he couldn’t wait for our future together and for us to have our own little family. This is a direct reflection on how important family is to my husband.

Fast forward to trying to have a baby and getting let down every month. Some months I would cry when my period came and he would hold me and tell me not to worry because we would have children one way or another and it would happen in time. It just wasn’t our time yet. Now let’s jump to learning that IVF was going to be our solution and that is the ONLY way we could have these children that we’ve dreamed about for years. It definitely was a tough pill to swallow. I would often pick AJ’s brain and I think the reason behind it was, I needed to feel better and I needed to hear his response to make me feel better. I would tell him that I bet he wished he would have known this before marrying me, or I would apologize for being this way, or I would tell him that this would be a good reason for him to leave me because I know just how much having kids meant to him. He was always quick to reassure me that it wasn’t my fault and he still loved me so much.

Then one day he said this, “I would rather be with you and not have kids than not be with you and have kids.” Okay, cue the tears. All of the tears. That man. Wow. What in the world did I do right in my 24 years of life to end up with a man like this? Wow.

Ever since that day, I knew that we had this. I knew that we were going to go through this storm together and when we come out of it, we would still be hand in hand. I know that our relationship is as solid as it gets. Not everyone finds a love this deep, strong and dependable but we have found it and I thank God every single day for that man. He will tell you over and over again that he’s the lucky one, but truth be told, I really am the lucky one.

Human Pin Cushion


Last week I got to come off birth control and take a horrible tasting antibiotic. I also had my IVF Baseline appointment. I was like a kid in a candy store attending this appointment, our journey was becoming so real and away we went. A Baseline appointment is where you pay for your IVF cycle, do some blood work and have an ultrasound to base where you’re at for your upcoming cycle. During my ultrasound, which I now refer to (thanks to a friend) as being wanded, the nurse kept saying, “Wow, everything looks great.”, “Oh my gosh, this is looking really good.”, and “Seriously, everything looks just the way we want it.” Needless, to say I left my appointment feeling really, really good about this road we are on. I’m also getting really used to hearing the words, “Undress from the waist down.” while the door slams behind me. Let me tell ya, IVF is a super romantic way to conceive some mini’s.


Today was our first day of stims. I say “our” because it really was OUR first day. My husband wants to be involved in this as much as possible. I may be the one getting poked and prodded at like I’m just a pin cushion, but he is there every step of the way. He wanted to watch the videos of how to give these shots with me, he wanted to know what the side effects of these meds I’m injecting myself with are, and he wanted to be the one to give me the shots. He told me a couple weeks ago that he felt like he needed to do something and that giving me the shots is how he wants to help. I really just think that poking me with needles is his idea of fun (ha ha). OK, totally kidding on that, kind of. But it was so sweet that he wanted to make sure I wasn’t alone and do anything and everything he could.

This morning, though, he had to leave earlier for work than when I was planning to give myself my morning injection so I did it by myself. Now, I’m pretty independent and I don’t like help on many things so I wasn’t too bothered by him not being here for it. I got everything ready and took the above picture and I just couldn’t do it. I pinched my skin and kept putting the needle to it, but I could not push it in. I tried a few times and nothing. This brought tears of frustration and fearfulness to me. I almost called my husband and told him I couldn’t do it. But then I just did it. No thoughts to talk me into it, it just happened like someone else took over my arm and hand and gave me my shot. It was seriously nothing. The worst part was the poke from the needle, I couldn’t believe it.


He was here for my night shot though! He’s feeling a bit under the weather today but he still jumped up at the chance to mix my meds up for me and give me this horrible shot. Can you believe I trusted this goofball to mix my meds up all by himself, he only had a few questions but he was a pro! Let me tell ya, this shot was awful and I’m not sure I like his sly smile from laughing at me in this photo. But, seriously how would we ever get through all of this if we weren’t able to laugh through it?

I almost feel like an addict because if I’m being honest, I’m already looking to my next shot tomorrow. I’m looking forward to every shot from here on out because there is a greater good coming from it. If I have to be a pin cushion and be poked and prodded at, then so be it. I will be okay. This is so small compared to what is ahead and we are looking so faithfully into our future and what this IVF journey is going to bring us.

Babies are everywhere. Seriously, everywhere.

You know that feeling when you learn a new word or new phrase for the first time and all of a sudden, the word/phrase just starts popping up everywhere? Well, that’s how life has been since trying for a little one. All of a sudden, I feel like we are having a baby boom again. There are literally babies everywhere.

I get emails at work with pictures of newborns. There’s a new pregnancy announcement on my social media accounts weekly if not a few times per week. Walk to grab some lunch? Baby bellies. Need to grab some milk on the way home? Babies. Go down to the local bar for dinner(small town Iowa guys, unless you want gas station food, that’s your only option on an “eat out night”)? Brand spanking new baby. Holy Moly. That sure is one way to make your ovaries feel like pumping out some offspring. I am invited to not just one but two baby showers in the same weekend. Like, seriously I’m not kidding when I say there are babies everywhere.

Apparently my email also thinks that I am pregnant or have a baby of my own because I get email updates on all baby stuff. OR maybe I am just completely obsessed with the idea of starting our family that I continually look at everything baby and everything maternity and then have to fight myself not to buy anything. I’ve even gone as far as to ask my husband if it would be a good idea to start stockpiling diapers and he had to calmly tell me that I might just be getting a little too excited.

Thank goodness our journey hasn’t turned me bitter. Far too often, I have heard stories and even heard people admit that they are so bitter towards those who are pregnant or have just had a baby. I’ve had conversations with people that have said that they had to very carefully break their pregnancy to a friend who has struggled to get pregnant because she was just too bitter. Now, don’t get me wrong sometimes I have a good little cry when I hear of another pregnancy announcement but I would never be bitter about it. How in the world can you look at a baby and feel bitter?

So, in my world, there are babies everywhere.

Shots for 24! …literally

The day after my birthday this week, (which if you know me at all, you know the day after my birthday is still considered my birthday – ha ha!) I received a very large box. This box was not full of typical fun birthday stuff but rather all of my meds that I will need through our entire IVF process. Yay… Cheers to 24! or should I say, Shots for 24! ….literally, shots. Lots of shots.

IVF is a super sexy way to have a kid… lots of meds & shots

Last week, I told you all of the meds I was taking and this week we added in an antibiotic to take twice a day. Both of us have to take this antibiotic for 7 days to fight off any infection that could be in our bodies and to prevent us from getting any type of infection.

This is all of the pills/vitamins I will be taking per day this week

This past week I have felt like complete crap. My week was full of nausea and pounding headaches. Again, I’m not sure if it’s my body trying to get used to everything, stress, the anxiety from the unknown or a combination of all of them but nearly everyday this week I have felt like I spent my nights closing down the bars instead of barely staying awake for the 9 o’clock news. Now, I am definitely not complaining about this, I know that we are extremely blessed to have the opportunity to do this because I understand that this is not something that everyone is able to do and I am very thankful that we are in a place where we can go down this road. I’m okay with feeling like complete crap because hopefully we will have a happy ending someday. But, when I started this blog, I wanted to show you what this is really like and show you all the raw moments because this is definitely not a rainbow and butterflies type of situation. So, this week I have felt horrible, I’ve been exhausted but I’ve also been extremely excited. It all balances out.

This week it just hit us and all of this became so very real. We received our IVF calendar and realized that if everything goes as planned and my body responds in a healthy way, that we could transfer and be PUPO (Pregnant Until Proven Otherwise) in just one short month. Everything that seemed so far away and so unlikely for us just a very short while ago, could happen in just one month. I’m not sure if it was the fact that we received our calendar and these meds in the same week or what happened, but all of a sudden it just clicked for us. I almost feel naive for being excited but truly, I’m excited for this journey. Now, I’m not exactly excited for all of these shots, BUT I’m not complaining about them either.