Monday, 26 September 2016

Lupron Side Effects

Oh good golly miss molly... Lupron = no fun at all. So yesterday I was getting the full flood of the emotional side effects and then last night and today I'm having the physical ones starting up.

Lupron Depot Symptom 1 - STOMACH ACHE
So my stomach is a gurgling mess. TMI alert but generally my "system" doesn't flow too regular... now its the opposite problem. I feel constantly mildly nauseous.

Lupron Depot Sympton 2 - INSOMNIA
So was super tired... yet I could NOT for the life of me, fall asleep last night. Nor could I stay asleep. I was a tossing turning mess. Couldn't sleep in either. So the cycle continues with me being very tired today.

Lupron Depot Symptom 3 - NASAL CONGESTION
Okay, so I have allergies and have recently seen a massive shift in the volume of my nasal congestion. I have basically had none (between allergy shots, and an air purifier). Yet as of yesterday, more so today, I have a serious stuffy nose going on. I did a quick search and it doesn't seem to be correlated, but I'm including since everyone is different and I believe it has had this affect on me. I'll update if it turns out I have a cold or something else random I can blame it on.

Lupron Depot Symptom 4 - HOT FLASHES
So far I don't mind this so much. I hate being cold... so I'm not too bothered. Ask me in a few weeks.

Lupron Depot Symptom 5 - CLAMMY SKIN
So my hands are now permanently clammy. They have a nice sheen to them constantly. Hubby won't so much want to hold my hand anymore. Maybe I should invest in a nice pair of pretty gloves?

So far that's all I'm experiencing that I can tell.... the symptom list from web md looks as follows so who knows what the future has in store for me... I'm particularly looking forward to facial hair. Ya that sounds fun... NOT.

  • hot flashes (flushing)
  • increased sweating
  • night sweats
  • chills
  • clammy skin
  • tiredness
  • swelling of the ankles/feet
  • increased urination at night
  • mental/mood changes (e.g., depression, mood swings)
  • dizziness
  • injection site reactions (burning, redness, stinging, pain, bruising, swelling,abscess)
  • acne
  • increased growth of facial hair
  • breakthrough bleeding in a female child during the first 2 months of Lupron Depot treatment
  • weakness
  • nausea
  • diarrhea
  • constipation
  • stomach pain
  • skin redness/itching/scaling
  • joint or muscle pain
  • vaginal itching or discharge
  • breast swelling or tenderness
  • testicle pain
  • impotence
  • loss of interest in sex
  • sleep problems (insomnia)
  • rash (including a painful rash with fever)
  • memory problems
  • blisters/sores
  • facial swelling
  • vaginitis
  • weight gain
  • headache

Sunday, 25 September 2016

Batsh!t Crazy

Oh no.... so it begins. First I go to Starbucks and lose my sh!t at the woman for messing up my drink. Chalked it up to me being tired and not full awake yet. Fast forward to this afternoon and I literally turn into an angry mean warrior at Kroger. Homme InFertile had a serious look of fear on his face. Walk out to our car and burst into tears apologizing. Proceed to come home and once again in comfy clothes am a bright ray of sunshine.. until I cry again.

Holy hell.... this is one roller coaster. Lupron Depot... you and I are friends off. And yet... you're in my system for the next who knows how many months. I blame you ENDOMETRIOSIS. Hmm. Good times... gooooood tiiiiimmmmes.

CD3 Lupron Vlog

Hey guys...

Youtube channel is up and running and we've posted our first few videos. Subscribe and follow along!

Most recent video is of hubby and me tackling the ginormous Lupron Depot Injection. Spoiler alert: hurt like a b!&@#.  My arm was so sore I could barely sleep that night. Feeling a bit better today thank goodness.

So now we wait. Looks like I'll start meds etc. at the end of November, so a full few months of nothingness now. Hurry up and wait. Thus far I don't have any symptoms. Although I was super emotional/angry this morning when they messed up my green tea latte at Starbucks... so maybe that's a lie. Time will tell haha.

Friday, 23 September 2016


Okay really!?!?!?

So I go in for remote monitoring (US/BW) early this morning to get checked for the all clear for my Lupron Depot Injection which will basically put my body into a menopausal state (aka hormone crazy time, bone loss, aches, and no more reproductive cycle hoping to stall endo). Great. All goes well, I pay the $300 out of pocket (ugh) and then proceed to wait for my clinic to call with the results once they're forwarded.

I wait and wait.... no email/call. So finally at 3pm I email to follow up. I'm an hour behind NY so that's still 4pm and an hour before their end of day.. should be plenty of time...

They respond almost immediately asking where I had blood drawn. I immediately reply with all their info. Hmm... maybe it didn't get sent automatically.... good thing I followed up. 10 minutes later I get an email with my results saying I'm cleared to inject.

Okay... so I email back right away.... Does this mean that I inject today? Respond immediately simply

Alright so I've got my answer that I'm clear and approved to inject, and then instructions to do so today... but where?? I open the container and it says intramuscular... should I do it in the arm? the thigh? the butt? It says to be determined by doctor. So I email again... we're talking immediately (it's now 3:25 my time). No response.

I wait 30 min. 4pm I email again to follow up... they're going to be leaving for the day and I don't know how or where to inject this frickin thing!!!!!! answer...

Finally at 530 my time I receive an answer. Do it the same as your hcg trigger intramuscularly.

So fine... technically this is answering my question. Sort of. But this is a stressful thing giving injections, making sure it's on the right day, doing in the right spot etc. Had they taken an extra moment when giving me the go ahead to do the injection, it would have been nice to either receive a phone call to let me know to go ahead, if there was a specific time, where to inject etc, and provide an opportunity for questions. But they're busy, I get it. So maybe don't respond just YES. Maybe take an extra few seconds and type out a response that includes instructions and maybe even if the mood strikes a dash of encouragement. It could be a simple copy and paste response as follows:

"We have reviewed your blood work and ultrasound from earlier today and you have been cleared to go ahead with your Lupron Depot Injection. This is to be done anytime from now to end of day. This is an intramuscular injection and should be done in the arm muscle. This is similar to that of the HCG trigger injection. Should you wish to refer to the video, you can do so here. If you have any questions or concerns just let us know, we are here until 5pm EST."

Anyways... maybe I'm overreacting, it's possible... I am PMSing after all, but I mean come on! We infertiles have enough stress going to appointments, billing, insurance, simply BEING INFERTILE, that we don't need the stress of lack of communication from doctors who just expect us to know things, thrown on top of it all.

UGh. Rant over.

Thursday, 22 September 2016

Appointment Tomorrow

Wow... so it's happening... things are getting underway again and I'm feeling a bucket of emotions. Excitement to be starting another cycle. Impatience that this cycle will take so long. Apprehension at the drug I'll be taking (Lupron). Anticipation of what to expect with the other drugs along the way. Butterflies at the possibility that this cycle could work. Fear that it won't. It's like a smorgasbord of emotions, most of which aren't pleasant. One of which.... hope... drives it.

So tomorrow I go in for remote monitoring at a clinic here in Texas. They just need to make sure I don't have any cysts and that my bloodwork (hormone levels) looks good before proceeding with Lupron injection. Costs $300 out of pocket for one measly appointment. Boo hiss.

Then once my doc has a look at my results I'll (or Homme InFertile will) administer the injection. And then we wait...

So if all goes well, looks like I'd be starting the meds for this cycle November 30th with transfer slated for December 15th. Fingers crossed all goes according to plan. Who knows how my body will respond. Eek. We just need to decide if I'll do monitoring locally here in Texas, or if I'll go to New York for a few weeks. 

Tuesday, 20 September 2016


Thanks to all that voted for the Hope Blog Award. As you may or may not know, I was selected as a nominee, however I just found out I did not win. Congrats to Shelley Who Writes who did! I'm a bit bummed, but I don't do this for awards, I do this for therapy (for myself) first and foremost, and as a support to those of my infertility sisters out there so they feel less alone.

That being said I DID start an instagram account today. Follow along @femmeinfertile !!!

Saturday, 17 September 2016

Waiting on CD1

So here we go again... sorta... in a new kind of way I guess. This next cycle I will be taking my first ever Lupron Depot shot. It is an injection that puts your body into a state of menopause basically and is thought to calm the uterine lining and any inflammation that may be present. Sounds promising but of course who knows if it's my winning ticket or not.

Unfortunately we have to wait and try and see when CD1 comes... see it's all about timing because the shot is a 3 month injection and then we set up for a Frozen Embryo Transfer and this all seems to align very close to Christmas... and of course there are clinic closures etc.

So we wait and see. If not this month, possibly next or at worst the one after that. I'm not tied to any of these timelines, I no longer feel this sense of urgency. I'm in no rush to go through all of the ups and downs again, but I AM ready.

I've been questioning a lot lately whether or not I should be getting a lap first (for endo). What I came to the decision of, was that surgery is risky, and if Lupron could work, why not try it first. But then you ask yourself, "but what if a lap is the answer and I'm unneccessarily wasting good embryos?"... but truth be told if I did lap, I might be asking the same thing of if I did Lupron. So let's just say that it's a coin toss. I have to be okay with the idea that BOTH may be part of my future. And that one vs. the other isn't going to make a difference. I have to just trust my gut and go with it.

I met with a beautiful (inside and out) woman off one of my support forums (Hi if you're reading this!) who encouraged me to follow my gut. She like so many others I've chatted with have been around the block just as long or longer than myself. Maybe not always in years passed, but in tests, and procedures and cycles etc. I just wish we could all have our happily ever afters. But it was nice to meet someone face to face and feel like I was understood. When my food came and it had cheese on it she immediately knew that I needed to send it back. See dairy for immune or endo girls is a no no. She didn't even need to know that I was also allergic to know that I shouldn't be having it. That's a refreshing experience, as small as it might seem.

Anyways... as I write this I am filled with hope, fear, anxiety, anxiousness and excitement over the prospect of getting back on the horse so to speak. The countdown is on... well as soon as CD1 appears I guess.

Friday, 16 September 2016


So I saw a post on Facebook the other day... from the account "Simple Reminders" and it was a story about a pregnant woman wearing a t-shirt with a rainbow over her belly. The story illuminated the fact that this term has become widely more understood, and therefore certain strangers knew instantly that this woman was indeed carrying a "Rainbow Baby". Beautiful of course, and great that awareness of miscarriages and pregnancy after miscarriage is becoming more widely understood and all, but it left me feeling a little empty.

Why? Because, well, like many others, I simply have never been pregnant... at all. And should I fall pregnant, there is no "term" for that baby I would be carrying. It wouldn't be a rainbow baby, no, because I've never experienced a miscarriage. But I HAVE experienced 5 years of infertility, failed treatments and months upon months of disappointment, heartache and crushing of dreams. So why when I get pregnant do I fall under "Pregnant after Infertility"? Not really glamorous, and honestly... those "rainbow babies" also fall into that category too. Maybe "Miracle Baby"? I've heard this term thrown around, but truth be told many other things also fall into this category... premies, babies born with some kind of illness or disease, babies born to women after going through menopause.

I guess part of the question I ask myself, is why do I feel I need to be defined by a term? Why is this important to me. I like to self reflect when I'm feeling angry or upset and really delve into the deeper rooted issue at play. In this case, I think why I feel so frustrated I'm not given a term is that I don't feel validated for the pain I'm enduring. 

Women who go through a miscarriage are warriors. They deserve all the recognition and celebration in the world for their little Rainbow Babies. I don't EVER want to take away from that. But at the same time, I want that recognition and celebration too one day... and it just doesn't seem to be a thing. And I find that disheartening.

So I'm brainstorming a moment here... what kind of term could we coin for such a thing? For women who have repeated implantation failure (in this case we'll specify that to include at least 3 failed transfers).

One idea I have is based on the quote "It's always darkest before the dawn."

Dawn Baby
Sunrise Baby

Next idea is "Risen from the Ashes" because we women of repeated failure feel like we die inside each and every time.

Phoenix Baby

Based on the calm after the storm

Storm Baby

Final idea is based on the fact Hope is eternal, and that we never lost hope, never gave in to failure.

Hope Baby

I'd love to hear any and all ideas anyone has.... or if there already is a term out there, I'd really REALLY love to know about it ;)

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Weekend Getaway

Homme InFertile and myself took a belated Anniversary Trip to Orlando and NY this weekend. NY wasn't originally part of it but hubby had to go for work last minute and I conceded and joined him ... Though it didn't take much convincing.

I'm a super big nerd and have been wanting to go to Harry Potter World. Through treatment schedules and draining of funds, we just hadn't been able to make it happen. Plus we all know "pregnant women shouldn't ride" and well I kept hoping that I'd indeed get pregnant therefore rendering any plans useless. 5 years later with not a single positive hpt and I finally said screw it. So off we went. 

I was a little nervous about being around so many kids but the excitement and energy was infectious. Plus more adults than kids this past weekend I swear. I guess I'm not alone in my childish joy. 

Jurassic Park Ride though was my fav ride-wise. So much nostalgia. 

Also made time for some nice meals and poolside RnR. 

Then it was off to NYC which was exciting for me. I hadn't been back since we moved. Was great to revisit lots of my fav spots. 

Room with a view and room service was definitely a stark contrast to living there haha. 

All in all was great for us just to get away and reconnect as a couple. We've been through so much together: infertility, two massive moves, job loss etc, that it was much overdue. I smiled so much, and my heart felt fuller than it had in a long time. ❤️

So this is a great reminder to be sure to do things for yourself every now and again. It's so easy to be swept up in the infertility race that we forget to take care of the child inside ourselves. I'm glad to have been reminded of the importance of that this past weekend. 

Tuesday, 6 September 2016


It's not a new topic, but one that we (Homme InFertile and myself) continue to revisit. Support. It was what my blog post during Infertility Awareness Week was about. (Ps. if you haven't voted and are enjoying my blog, I'd love your "support" ;) vote here). But support is something I'm realizing not only ebbs and flows, but is and always will be something we have to ask for, seek out, muster within ourselves, and accept the lack of. 

Support shouldn't be hard to come by, but for infertiles it often is. Perhaps because the topic of infertility is so taboo. Perhaps because the topic is so sensitive. Perhaps because the majority of people don't (and/or can't) really understand. Perhaps because many of the people in our lives aren't capable of giving the kind of support we need. Regardless of why... it sucks. And it hurts.

See being infertile means a lot of things. Your identity is thrown to the wolves, and you either let them gobble it up, or you fight to retain as much of it as you can. But no matter what, you lose a little bit of yourself along the way. You might be hardened by the fight, you might be broken and lost. Each journey is unique... and ever evolving. For me, I am constantly fighting to regain a part of myself. But what I've been learning is I have been changed. I can no more easily become the person I was before, than a soldier forget the war. I have never served in the war, and I cannot imagine what it is like. However, comparisons to the mental-emotional damage have been drawn by experts and I am not surprised. I feel like I'm fighting a war. Each failed cycle a battle lost. But the war forges on without an end in sight.

But I have my husband, and I remind myself how lucky I am to have him, how lucky we are to have such a solid supportive marriage. Some days we're enough for each other. Other days we're both down and broken and we need someone else to pick us up together. It takes a lot of strength to pick someone up when we too are broken, but that's what our marriage has become. I put my own pain, sorrow, misery on the shelf for a moment, and hold him in my arms and tell him it'll be okay. I tell him I love him, and support him. In that moment, no one is supporting me. Another day, and he does the same for me. It's survival. But it's not easy.

When you have been on the infertility journey as long as we have (5+ years) you notice that people you open up to and share your vulnerability with choose one of three paths.

1) Stop asking.
These are the people who don't know how to handle it. Our situation makes them uncomfortable. They don't know what to say, nor do they know how to ask what to say, so they just stop altogether. Maybe they themselves have gotten their happily ever after and life has become busy and overwhelming for them. They're not capable of supporting, so they don't extend the olive branch. Or maybe they harbour guilt, so they avoid the source. Maybe they themselves are also going through some sort of emotional life crisis. No matter the rationale, in my humble opinion, none of these are a valid excuse. If you love someone, "Stop Asking" is not an option. You're only further isolating those individuals and making them feel more alone, and unsupported. I don't stop being a part of my friends lives because I'm struggling. I still call up and offer support to any of my loved ones when they need it. I might not always be the best support, but I'm there, and they know I care even in moments I can't fully show it.

2) Ask. Provide support.
These are the people who may have experienced infertility themselves. Or they have had close friends or family members go through it. Or they are just damn good people who can put their own sadness/pain on hold and provide support to another person in need. These people are the ones who ask what they can do, even when they have no clue how to handle it. These are the people who check in, and call you just so you know you still have friends and family members who care. These are the warriors of our lives. Thanks to these people, we feel less alone, and know there is support when we need it.

3) Try and help.
These are the people who feel helpless and powerless watching infertiles struggle. They try and offer well-intentioned advice in an effort to fix our problems for us.  Having to tell them we've tried that, or that's not relevant to our journey, or why that's not a valid option for us, only creates more stress. In reality, the only way to really help someone struggling with Infertility is to become an "Ask. Provide Support" person. It's not your job to fix us. That's our job, and our doctors and specialists.

Anyways. I'm saying all this because we as infertiles need to learn to ask for the type of support we need. It's not always easy telling someone that the way they are handling your interactions is unhelpful or causing more harm than good. But it IS necessary. If those people can't handle or respect your needs/wishes... then maybe it's time re-assess that friendship. That being said, remember that your struggle is no more or less than anyone else's. Wanting people there for you, means being able to step outside of your own struggles and be there for others when they need you too... especially if this hardship sticks around for you as long as it has for us.

Finally, an end note. I often write poems to express the way I feel. So a new one below about the identity struggle of infertiles:

Me. I. A dissolving persona.
Masks of truth.
Masks of youth.
Me. I. A broken fraction.
Full of sadness.
Full of madness.
Me. I. A hopeless dreamer.
Years are passing.
Years amassing.
Me. I. A mother, a father.
Without a child.