Tunnel Vision

Tunnel vision seemed like an appropriate title for this post being the gargantuan MRI machine feels like being stuck in a shallow tunnel, surrounded tightly on all sides with blaring fireworks going off directly into your ears.  

I arrived at the dreaded hospital (aka place of death) about 15 minutes early for my MRI.  Thankfully, they are currently in the process of renovating so it didnt even look like the same place I stepped foot in 8 months ago when I underwent the D & C.  I checked in, got a wristband, and was pleasantly informed that my insurance would pay 100% for it.  While waiting, I asked the lady at the desk if I could request a copy of my images that would be taken.  She gave me a form and I filled it out. Finally, the technician called me back and reviewed the script with me.  I must say how sweet this lady was…she asked questions, listened to my story, and even took the time to call my RE’s office to ask a few questions.  

I have only had 1 MRI before and that was for the herniated disc I have in my neck. What I remembered most from that was how long the scan seemed and that I couldnt really move much. I didnt remember it to be too bad.  Now, I should add that this neck MRI was a several years back, which were pre-anxiety days, or the pre-IVF and pre-RPL days of my life. 

This being said, I contemplated the idea of taking a Xanax before todays MRI, but did not since I drove myself to the appt. straight from work.  Anyways, I had an IV adminstered this time for the dye which I did not have in the past.  After the IV, she had me take off all metal items, empty my bladder, and lay on the table.  She asked me what type of music I wanted to listen to, reviewed the protocol with me, put on my headphones, and pushed me into the tunnel.  

Immediately, I caught myself feeling anxious.  I started breathing heavier and suddenly felt like I was going to die.  If you have not experienced anxiety/panic before, this probably sounds insane to you…nevertheless, its true.  I closed my eyes and started praying.  I was able calm down after a few minutes.  I considered pushing the help button several times as I stared at the top of the tunnel above my face.  Then I started to think of all the people with terminal diseases who constantly go through procedures like this.  Just for a moment, I felt like I could relate to them.  Please dont misunderstand, my disease is in no way fatal like theirs; but my level of empathy and understanding for the pain they endure was taken to another level at that moment.  Something I will never forget.  Something positive that infertility and recurrent pregnancy loss have bestowed upon me…more compassion. 

Needless to say, I sucked it up and did not push the button.  Instead, I began to think about the journey to where we are now.  I imagined an imaginary line running up the center of the tunnel, from the bottom where my feet lay, to the top of the tunnel where my head was. Sort of like a timeline with my feet being start and my head finish.  I wondered where we are on the line in regards to bringing our baby home…are we close to the top? In the middle? Still at the bottom? I started to place events on the line, giving each a few moments of my time.  I couldnt see above my feet as she slid me at times…this was good…putting those events behind me.  I ended up placing us somewhat close to my head, in the vicinty of my upper torso to be exact.  

Time was finally up. The wonderful technician surprised me with the CD of my images on the spot, so I did not need to mess with getting them another time. I popped in the CD and tried to examine it when I arrived home.  All of it looks utterly insane to me.  I tried Dr. Google, still no help there.  Regardless, it was comforting to be handed the CD, even if I cant make anything of it until my RE calls me.  Its the little things in life, right? 

Fall Holiday

Yesterday was officially a fall holiday off from work. Our day off had originally been booked with appointments centering around the upcoming FET that ended up getting cancelled (day 3 ultra and blood). We also had a SA set up for Shane since its been well over 2 years now since his varicocele repair.  We have been pretty much getting them done every 6 months since the surgery for data points, and over time have watched them slowly, but steadily increase.  

Anyways, we cancelled all of these appointments.  For obvious reasons the day 3 is off and the SA can wait. Neither one of us felt like driving an hour south for it.  Getting pregnant right now isnt an option, so the SA is irrelevant.  

We spent the day relaxing and getting my fall decorations out of the attic.  I wanted to put all my items out on display, but I have a hard time doing so when its still so darn hot out. Like 90! However, if I wait for a cold front to come in I might miss the whole season. I think I will break down and do it this weekend.  

We also went to Nutrition Smart, a local health food store in our area.  We stocked up on more COQ10, and our soaps and body washes we always get there.  Additionally, I invested in some Castor Oil packs.

I have been researching these packs for sometime now.  Many women use them to help naturally heal their fibroids and I figure I might as well give it a shot.  I inquired with the lady who worked there about what most people use them for (just to see what she would say) without telling her my knowledge of what they are used for…I was pleasantly surprised when she replied quickly with “fibroids.”  As we speak, I am currently “soaking” in this sticky oil! My dogs seem to think I have some type of food lathered on my body…I have been fighting them off me the whole time. 

One last thing regarding my MRI next week. As you know, the specialist at the hospital who my RE initially wanted to read the MRI couldnt be found. He quit. I still scheduled at the outpatient hospital he used to work at.  After scheduling, I received a message from the scheduling dept. saying they needed to speak with me about my appt. time. When I called back the lady asked if I could come in earlier in the day for it…I explained that I am a teacher 2 counties away and no I couldnt, that I already set it all up workwise.  I asked her why and she said they needed to maintenance the MRI machines at their location! Im sorry, but not exactly what I wanted to hear. I know all machines need maintenance, but with my luck it is probably a faulty machine or something. 

She offered that I could keep my original time and go to the actual, “real” hospital for the MRI if I wanted.  The hospital that I had my last d & c at…where our last baby was taken from my body.  I hate that hospital.  Really, all hospitals for that matter (aka place of death).  And I havent been back to a hospital since that awful day back in February.  BUT, I sucked it up and said “OK.”  Hopefully I will get a working machine, a pleasant tech, and be in and out of that place.  Hospitals are big places and Im praying I am nowhere near the same section I was last time.  Until then my friends ….

The Final Days of the 95 days of Summer Happiness

Bringing you days 93, 94, & 95 of the 95 days of summer happiness, all for your viewing pleasure.

We hope you have enjoyed seeing these happy photos over the last 3 months as much as we have enjoyed experiencing them. And although summer has been great, today we conclude this season of our lives and welcome the fall.  

Day 93 of Summer Happiness


Spending time in here has been making me happy

Day 94 of Summer Happiness


Received this in the mail from a great lady…hopefully this lucky charm will stay with me as summer ends and start working its magic come fall

Day 95 of Summer Happiness


Good-bye summer! Hello fall!


A quick update for those who have been following along…

My MRI is set up for next week. After talking with my RE, I will still be going to the same hospital she requested, even though the particular specialist they want to read it is no longer there.  

My RE and her colleagues are in the process of trying to track him down, but regardless, I can get the MRI in the meantime, and then just sign a release form for whoever we want to read it after the fact.  

At this point, we really just want to know the results so we know what options we will be faced with. The short of it is this:

If it’s an adenomyoma, we will probably try to shrink it for 3 months with Lupron suppression. If its a fibroid, they will likely want to try to remove it again. 

If either of these fail, gestational carrier is the next recommended form of action. Im not sure what we will do after the MRI results…one day at a time for now.  

Packing it All Up

Last night was spent packing up all of our TTC/IF/IVF “stuff” yet once again.  Over the years, we have boxed up all of this “stuff” up and put it away time and time again for things like failed cycles, pregnancy losses, etc.  Since our FET cycle has officially been called off, I figured it was time to do a quick sweep of the house and find all the items we had been planning to use starting this week but won’t be and get rid of them.  Here is what I found so far…

Item 1: 

Lovely TTC Crate shipped to me with lots of special goodies inside. I actually just got this package, and as I started to tear it open, I decided against it. I will save it for when we (hopefully) start TTC again one day.

Item 2:

Crinone leftover from previous fails, that would have been used this time around.

Item 3:

You probably can’t even tell what this is from the picture, so let me tell you. This is a DEEP box with folders, binders, receipts, loose papers, cards, etc. all pertaining to TTC. I threw in some more papers to top it off before it goes back into its closet.

Item 4:

LH strips, HCG strips, and urine cups. Won’t be needing these anymore!

Item 5:

Circle + Bloom Audio CD’s purchased for the upcoming FET and possible pregnancy…neither have ever been opened.

Item 6:

Although we did not need this for our FET, we won’t be using it at home anymore either. It’s not safe for me to get pregnant at all right now.

Item 7: 

A book that I prayed would help me get through a pregnancy should our FET have worked.

Out of sight, out of mind, right? I wish it was that simple! Even though it’s a lot harder than that, I still can’t stomach to see all of this “stuff” just laying around for months and months.  Maybe God-willingly one day we will be able to bring it all back out, but for now…it’s bye-bye.

Week 13 of the 95 days of Summer Happiness 

Bringing you week 13, days 86-92 of the 95 days of summer happiness.
We hope you enjoy as much as we did!

Day 86 of Summer Happiness 

All of the jewelry my lovely mother passed on to me!

Day 87 of Summer Happiness 

My handsome hubby sipping a Pina Colada

Day 88 of Summer Happiness  

Jet Ski rentals on a summer day

Day 89 of Summer Happiness

Cute local spot to paddleboard

Day 90 of Summer Happiness 

Getting some love from favorite old lady Bella, my moms dog

Day 91 of Summer Happiness


A day at the spa, consisting of hair, nails, tanning, etc.
Day 92 of Summer Happiness 
Sperry socks…perfect fit!


A Few Things…

  1. I am currently at the spa, treating myself to a new hair cut, color, tan, and perhaps a pedicure if I feel like allowing someone to touch my feet.
  2. I called the hospital my RE wants me to get the MRI done at and requested the specialist she gave me the name of.  The lady who answered initially told me that she thought this person was on vacation (no surprise there, why should anything ever be easy?).  She asked if she could call me back after she looked into it.  Soon after I got a call from her informing me that the specialist no longer works at their hospital and she does not know his whereabouts. Shocker!!! Not.  I proceeded to email my RE and am awaiting a reply on whats next. 
  3. The past 2 times I have given blood and/or got an IV, the nurses have slapped (not tapped) my veins like a heroin addict looking for a fix.  When I questioned it, they explained that my right arm has so much scar tissue built up, they cannot hit a vein anymore.  I guess my left still has a few spots available to work with. Maybe later today I will count up how many times I have had needles in my arms the past few years; I am estimating somewhere in the range of 60-80 times.  Who knows.
  4. I have been tracking how much I am peeing during the nights the past several weeks. I was diagnosed years ago with a smaller than average bladder by a urologist, but things have really accelerated in the pee department as of lately.  Im peeing now more than I ever even did pregnant.  It started out where I was getting up 3 times a night consistently, and now its up to 5 a night consisently.  This is after barely sipping anything to drink. Hence, I am sooo thirsty but cant bear to drink more because I might as well plan on pulling an all nighter if I do.  I am assuming the wonderful mass in my uterus is causing this problem. More solidification that we have a big problem on our hands. So frustrating. 
  5. I am coming down with a cold. I took airborne last night to try and fight it  off. Im sneezing like crazy and my throat is hurting.  Perfect timing!
  6. Our fur babies are such a blessing to us. I have never dedicated a post to them, but this is in the works and well overdue. 
  7. I have not responded to all of the caring comments you all have sent our way after the bad news we received this week. This is unlike me. Please know I am so thankful for all of you and will reply soon. We are still letting it all soak in.  

Are You There God? It’s Me, Angela…

Hysteroscopy #4 was Monday.  I know in some cases no news = good news, but that is not the case.  I wish I had better news to share.  We prayed and prayed for it.  We have waited almost a year from our last transfer for it.  However, it didn’t come.  And I can’t say I am surprised….What’s another major disappointment at this point?

Our upcoming October FET is off.  Cancelled.  Done.

During the hysteroscopy, my RE found that the mass that was surgically removed back in May returned.  The “something” on the ultrasounds really was “something” after all.  It only took 3 months for that f’n monster to grow back ( you will have to excuse my language).

I woke up from the twilight anesthesia with tears rolling down my face.  Not from any physical pain—just mental.  It reminded me of the feeling I had when I awoke from one of my D & C’s…EMPTY.  I could hear bits and pieces of the “oh no’s, “dammits,” and “shits,” from the staff during the procedure, and in my half alive state, I knew all too well what it meant.

I recall pushing the nurse off of me when she kindly tried to help me get dressed..hell, this wasn’t my first rodeo—I could do it myself. They showed me images and comparisons, blah, blah, blah.  They encouraged me not to give up hope…again, blah, blah, blah.

My RE said she wanted to consult with the 4 other specialists at her practice about what to do at this point, which brings us to today.  Their “meeting of the minds” took place this morning.  I sat by my phone waiting all day for the call to come in.  For some STUPID reason, up until today, we believed it might be a possibility that we could still proceed with our FET in October. It hadn’t been indefinitely ruled out on Monday…we had left it all hanging on the professional consensus today.

The call finally came around 4 p.m.  The consensus was that not ONE doctor thought we should move forward.  In fact, we won’t be moving forward for quite some time.  In fact, we most likely won’t even be bringing a baby home with us in 2016 at all.  If ever.

The recommendation is for an MRI of the mass next.  This has to be done by some specialist at some hospital.  My RE gave me all the details, none of which I remember any of tonight as I sit here and type this. Originally, I intended on writing things down and asking things during our call today, but none of that happened.  I dropped my pen, listened, and put my hands on my head as I blankly stared into space.

The MRI will rule out a few things (of which I don’t even give a damn enough to get into right now) and depending on the results, the plan of action would go 1 of 3 ways:

  1. Have another operation —looking at springtime for a possible transfer date with this scenario
  2. Lupron suppression for at least 3 months- looking at springtime for a possible transfer date
  3. Gestational Carrier

I guess it was only a matter of time before #3 was thrown directly on the table.  Because at this point, we all know options 1 and 2 may very well fail.  Shit, option 1 already did fail once.  

When she told me I may never have the opportunity to feel life inside me again, I felt all the blood rush through my body. She could barely get the words gestational carrier out…I was pretty much like “go ahead, give it to me.”  I can’t describe how I know I was pulling it out of my RE…I just do.  After 2 years of being in direct contact, I know her and she knows me.  She kept saying how sorry she was.  Yea, us too.  No girl grows up dreaming of IVF, miscarrying, or let alone, a surrogate.

I think this might be one of the hardest posts I have written.  Before writing this, I cried and yelled at my mom on my drive home.  I should add that I only did all this because I know I can let it all out with her.  She tried to tell me it’s not the end of the road, it’s not over, she loved me, and all that.  She tried to support me the best she could.  I mean, really, at this point, who knows what to say to us anymore.  I get it.

I don’t want to hear it’s all okay, because in our world it is not all okay.  There are no rainbows here today, folks.  And yes, you may tell me they are on the way, to keep my faith, and hope…but that doesn’t change today.  Another let down.  Time keeps on passing us by.  It’s been a LONG road and I would like to think we have done OK being patient on it…so I must ask…are you there, God??? Remember me?!?

So, tonight, my husband and I just laid in the dark crying.  All too familiar.  We talked about how we let our hopes get up again, how we feel so lost.  Yet again…  1 step forward…20 back.  There was a lot of silence.  What can we say? I feel like this may be our biggest crossroad yet.  We talked about giving up on all of it.  Who knows.  The conversation ended with how maybe we need to get the hell out of here and go away, from everyone, just the 2 of us.

Week 12 of the 95 Days of Summer Happiness

Bringing you week 12, days 79-85 of the 95 days of summer happiness, all for your viewing pleasure.

We hope you enjoy as much as we did!

Day 79 of Summer Happiness


A t-shirt from my mom with my favorite Disney Princess, Ariel

Day 80 of Summer Happiness

Cupcakes from my amazing mother…

Day 81 of Summer Happiness

Women’s conference I attended at church this week

Day 82 of Summer Happiness

Finally got time to get into my “Enchanted Forest” this week

Day 83 of Summer Happiness

Home ultrasound machine for my messed up neck and back…anyone who knows me knows this says happiness like no other

Day 84 of Summer Happiness

Florida summer sunset…simply amazing

Day 85 of Summer Happiness

My drink of choice…but hopefully my last one for awhile 😉

Hysteroscopy Eve

Well, H/S # 4 is Monday morning.  After loss #3 back in February, we decided that we would do another H/S before ever transferring again, so it makes sense that we have one right now.

H/S #3 in June, just 3 months ago, came back all clear after my operation, and thus, we didn’t think another H/S would really be needed this quickly.  We originally thought that having H/S #4 would be more for peace of mind and reassurance that all was still looking good before transferring again.  Wrong.  As you know, images from my HSG in late July and my ultrasounds in early August showed “something” irregular lurking around in my uterus.  So, here we are, actually needing the H/S again this soon after the last.

Our October FET is completely riding on the results of this H/S.  If there is “something” small, like a polyp, that can easily be removed while I am in a twilight, she will remove it, and we will move forward with our upcoming transfer.  Or better yet, there will be nothing at all showing and we will go forward.  However, if there is “something” large found again, like the mass back in March, she will not be able to remove it on the spot, and our October transfer will not be taking place.  I have no idea what will end up happening if the latter occurs– I don’t know if I am ready to go through another operation like the last one.  I am trying not to put too much thought into that for now, but realistically I know it could go either way tomorrow…50/50 chance.

We have learned that patience is necessary throughout all of this.  My husband and I have been together over 15 years now, and married for over 8.  We have been trying to have a baby for over 7, and we have been wrapped up in IUI and IVF cycles for 3 years now.  God is good and only He knows when the timing is right.  It might be next month, but it might not be.  All we can do today is pray for His blessings and protection to surround us….we would love if you could do the same for us! Thank you so much.