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Mia's Story
Submitted Nov 30, 2005 - Last updated Aug 13, 2007

I just turned 36 on Nov 18th, my husband and I have been married for over 8 years and have been trying for the last 4 years to get pregnant. We started going to a center for reproductive care almost 2 years ago. After 2 failed hsg's (hysterosalpingograms) it was determined that my tubes were blocked.

In June of 2004 we went into Boston MA to Brigham and Womens Hospital to have my tubes opened up. It was a success! Both tubes were unblocked. My husband and I were elated! We waited for 2 cycles before we began a try for a chlomid (clomid) cycle. We thought this is it! The tubes are unblocked, your sperm is fine my tubes are fine, parenthood here we come! How wrong we were.

We tried cycle after cycle, timed intercourse, trigger shots, blood samples and ultrasounds... my head was swimming. My body reacted great to the clomid the follicles looked great but then poor timing and oops you already ovulated.

Oops?? Are you kidding me? Another cycle gone. Baseline on the next cycle and oh sorry you have a cyst let's wait 'til next month... How easy it is for everyone to say, "OK, let's try next month". In the world of infertility, a month is forever! To have a wasted cycle?! The thought of it crushed us.

More failed attempts and then our Dr. recommened IUI (intrauterine insemination). We are self-pay, unfortunately our insurance does not cover IUI or IVF (in vitro fertilization). We decided to give it a shot. Twice. We tried once in July of 2005 and then again in August of 2005. Neither attempt was successful.

By this time my husband and I are thinking we should invest in pregnancy tests the way we buy them and hope and pray and squint and search for any faint hint that there might be a plus sign or that other line we so desperately are hoping to find is there. We never thought it would be like this. We are good people, have lots of friends, don't drink or do drugs, have great families yet can't get pregnant.

In the time we have been going to the fertility clinic and in the year of 2004 alone 4 of my close girlfriends got pregnant and now have beautiful babies.The pain I see in my husband's eyes and the pain I feel I would not wish upon my most worst enemy. What do you say when your friend says, "Guess what? I'm pregnant!"? You say how happy you are for them and then when you get home you cry yourself to sleep. We know the routine, it's all too familiar.

In October 2005 we spoke with our Dr. to see what our next step would be. He suggested IVF. Self pay, injections, lots of bloodwork and many ultrasounds later we drove into Boston to have my 15+, great looking follicles aspirated. We only got 3 eggs.

I was beside myself. What are the chances of a successful IVF with only 3 eggs to work with? What about all my great looking follicles? Only 3 eggs? I asked the nurse to go make sure, maybe it was 13 not 3, there must be a mistake? No mistake 3 eggs that's it. We went home deflated but tried to keep hopeful. The next day we were called and unbelievably we were told all 3 eggs fertilized. We were over the moon! This was a sign! This is it! We waited for 2 more long days to go back for the transfer, it was Thursday, Nov 17th - the day before my 36th birthday. Could this be the ultimate birthday present I would be receiving? The 3 embryos looked almost perfect the Dr. told us. After a discussion it was decided to transfer only 2 embryos. I was given a picture of the two that were transfered and told that they were rated (quality wise) as a 7 and an 8. The next day I got a birthday card from my husband that said To Mommy I love you and Happy Birthday Love 7 and 8. I laughed and cried and we hugged and dreamed.

Well today is Nov 30th, it is Wednesday and we go for a blood test on Friday Dec 2nd to see if there really will be a little 7 or 8 arriving in 9 months. It goes without saying that the last 12 days have been difficult to say the least. I have cried more in the last 12 days than my entire lifetime I think. This just has to work! We can't afford another IVF cycle for a while and I am not getting any younger. But all I can do is hope and wait. That unfortunately seems to be the story of your life when you have infertility problems, Hope and Wait.

Update - Dec. 2, 2005

Test results for our IVF cycle. Negative, not pregnant.

Update - June 25, 2006

We finally got insurance/coverage for ivf. It took a while but in April 2006 we got coverage. Today is actually June 25th 2006 and I am pleased to say I got 2 embryos implanted today.

We started with birth control pills then they switched my medication to gonal-f and repronex. They retrieved 8 eggs this time and 6 fertilized which is a much better response than last time. Today they transfered 2 embryos and 2 weeks from Monday we will see .

I must say this time around I am much more calm, as is my husband. I think a lot of it is knowing that we are not paying for this ourselves. How wonderful it was getting my box full of medication delivered right to my doorstep and only having to pay a small co-pay. It certainly does take a lot of pressure off of us. So now the wait begins. Everyone keep your fingers crossed. :)

Update - July 7, 2006

I was implanted with 2 embryos on sunday June 25th and the pregnancy test was scheduled for monday, July 10th. Around July 3rd, just 1 week after the embryo transfer, I noticed some pain in my belly and a really bloated feeling. I figured that I was probably getting ready to get my period and that the ivf cycle didnt work. I called the dr and was told to come in that they think I have hyperstimulation - it's when your body tries to replace the fluid that was drained out of your follicles and it contines to "leak" out of the punctures and into your belly.

They performed an ultrasound and took blood for tests. The dr told me to go home and not to work for a few days, to take it easy, drink lots of fluid etc. and that he would call later with the results. Later that day (Thursday July 6th 2006) the dr's office called. "Yes, you have hyperstimulation but thats not all... YOU'RE PREGNANT too!" It seems that when you go thru ivf and become pregnant it stimulates the ovaries and it is quite common to see hyperstimulation in the patients that become pregnant. When the nurse made the call to let me know the good news she confessed that 3 of the nurses in the office had a very stong feeling I was pregnant because of the ultrasound results, even before the blood test came back as positive. Now the wait begins for the first 3 months to pass so we can tell everyone the great news.

I do still hope everyone keeps their fingers crossed for us but this time for a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby. Thank you for reading and sharing in my story. Next update...will it be a boy or a girl?

Update - July 17, 2006

After finding out I am pregnant on July 6th, I went back for an ultrasound today, to confirm where the embryo has implanted - to make sure its in the uterus. I have good news - Surprise, Surprise! We saw 2 embryo sacks. As of right now I am pregnant with twins, it's very early in the pregnancy and things can change unexpectedly, but right now I am walking on air. To go from being infertile to carrying twins... I just cant belive it.

I go back for another ultrasound in 2 weeks to see the heartbeats and hopefully everthing will still look good. I will keep everyone posted.

Update - Sept 21, 2006

We did go back and saw the heartbeats and everything looked great. The babies were growing, I didn't get any morning sickness, I felt great but a little tired. At week 9 on a Sunday evening we ended up at the local emergency room. With no warning I felt a sharp pain almost like something popped inside me, then nothing, apprx 30 min later I started to pass bright red blood and lots of it. I was beside myself. I thought oh my gosh, this is it, its over!

Every book I read says if you pass bright red and lots of it, you are misscarrying. Why would I think any different? At the emergency room I was crying uncontrollably, apoligizing to my husband for not being able to give him children, asking God why this is happening to me after all we had been through.

The Dr tells us we have to have an ultrasound to see whats going on. I just knew it was not going to be good. Unbelievably both babies were fine and both had viable and strong heartbeats. How could this be? My husband and I could not believe what we were seeing on the screen, two little heartbeats. I asked why all the bleeding? Whats going on? Is misscarriage eminent? I was told I have a sub chorionic hemerage (subchorionic hemorrhage - bleeding behind the placenta). There's no meds, no vitamins, nothing that can be done about the sch, it will either go away on its own or I may bleed on and off through the entire pregnancy or we could lose the pregnancy.

Feeling helpless we were sent home. Two days later another bleed, back to the er, same thing, two healthy heartbeats. Since then I have been placed on bed rest and ultrasounds on a weekly basis. Two weeks ago I was told I had another sch near the second baby as well. My husband and I were deflated. But we were told the babies are still growing, the heartbeats look great, no blood supply is being cut off, so to concentrate on these positives. Most recent ultrasound showed the first sch is just about gone and the second sch is much smaller so things look good right now, but what a scare!

I guess no one said this road was going to be easy. We find out in a couple of weeks what the sexes are, I am hoping for one of each and if so, I am done. Next posting will be to tell you what we are having. As for our scare, I am sure some of you have gone through far worse and others not that bad but I must say when the times looked the worst they really were not, I only thought it was bad. Try to stay positive, there are babies in heaven just waiting for all of us. It does not matter how you get them or how they get to you they are there waiting for us to be ready for them in one way or another.

Update - Oct 18, 2006

My husband and I went for an ultrasound to check on the sch (subchorionic hemmorage) and were told both "bleeds" have completely healed on their own and the babies look good. We are elated!

However it seems nothing is going to be easy about this pregnancy. I have just found out I have gestational diabetes and will have to start insulin in the next few days and continue until the babies are born. Just one more bump in this rocky road to parenthood.

What will they be??? girl or boy??
When we got our first sch and it was near the baby furthest from my cervix (the baby on to, I call it) I thought for sure that this baby must be a girl for all the trouble she is causing and then because in every ultrasound the lower baby was always moving so much i thought that must be a boy. Well mother's instincts must have already kicked in because I was right. We are having a boy and a girl. We are going to have an instant family. How excited our families are and we too are feeing just so blessed.

Our due date is still feeling like a long way off but every day that goes by we feel less and less uneasy about the pregnancy. I am not scared all the time and wondering what else is going to go wrong. It seems with the infertility, sch, and now the gestational diabetes there can't be much else that can happen but who knows what's in store for us? All we can do is keep plugging away and hope for the best. Hopefully the next update will be that we have delivered our two little angels and it won't be to tell you about another problem. til then ...

Update - Nov 18, 2006

Well folks, nothing with this pregnancy is going as expected. on Nov 10th, Friday, I went for a routine ultrasound to check the babies, measure them and check the cervix etc.. Well it seems my cervix is close to non-existent. It dialated and is very short as well as being softer than it should be as well as the lower babies amniotic sack was funneling, which means the amniotic sac was falling down into the cervix and being exposed to bacteria and so forth they sent me to the local hospital started an iv took blood samples and took some cultures to see if i had any infections. From there I was sent via ambulance to Boston MA to the Brighams and Womens to see what they could do for me.

I was told I would probably need a stitch in my cervix and would be home in a day or two at the most. The stitch in the cervix is called a cerclage, it sounds so French, but let me tell you it's all very scary. Friday night we stayed and it was not looking good, I was only 22 weeks and 1 day so there is no chance of survival if the babies are to come and at 24 weeks its only a 50/50 chance for survival. They told me if my cervix dilated more or if there was infection then there was nothing they could do. The drs checked again on Sat morning and the cervix was the same and no signs of infection so things looked good for the cerclage. This entire time they have me head down and feet up in the bed its called Trandellenberg and it is not in the least bit comfortable! I still had not been upright since Friday morning, so when they administered the spinal I was on my side, which made it difficult to do. It took 3 people 3 tries each to get the spinal in. Finally it took and the dr started the cerclage, after about 15 min the dr came around and told me there was so much funneling he didn't think he could get the cervix stitched without breaking the amniotic sac. He tried and succeded. I thank God it was a success.

Monday evening at around 8pm we were home. No medication to take, just the instructions of bed rest until the babies come... what? Til they come? We are not due until March 15th?? Well, stay in bed until then or until the babies come - whichever comes first. Well today it has been 1 week since the cerclage and I have snuck to my computer to send this update and to check my mail.

It's been a very long road for my husband and me. It was very difficult getting pregnant but I never thought it would be so hard to stay pregnant, with all we have gone through I can't help but think better days are ahead. And, oh yeah, my baby shower is tomorrow. I get to stay in bed while my husband goes and enjoys himself on our behalf. Hopefully this is my last update until the babies come and we are hoping for them to arrive anytime in 2007. By then I will be at least 30 weeks and the chance of having healthy babies is much better. Everyone please say a prayer for me and my babies. We need all the help we can get. Hopefully no more bumps in the road for us - the best I can hope for in the future is some sleepless nights being up with "the twins".

Update - Nov 28, 2006

Well folks, here I am again with yet another bump in the road however this one is much larger than all the rest. At around 1:30 in the morning on Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, I found myself wide awake with what I thought was gas. I tried to releive the pressure I was feeling but nothing was working. Pains and cramps all over my lower abdomen. I was praying the cerclage was ok and hoping my water wasn't about to rupture.

We went to the local emergency room and got hooked up to monitors to check for the babies and to see if I was having contractions. We were still very hopeful at the time, seeing as though there was no blood and no contractions were showing up on the monitors. The nurse asked for a urine sample and when I gave it to her i found blood, which meant that the cerclage was probably failing and I was dialating against it. By now, I was feeling contractions every 4 to 5 minutes and they were getting stronger. they gave me meds via iv as well as a shot to stop the contractions, however the contractions only calmed down for about 15 minutes or so and then they were back to the 4 to 5 minutes and very strong. They also gave me a shot to help the babies lungs mature if they were to be delivered soon.

At this time, the decision to transfer me to Boston was made. They were only waiting to see if I should be flown via helicopter or taken by ambulance. Off to Boston, Brigham and Womens I went via ambulance. Things moved very quickly once I got to Boston. The cerclage was still in place however the contractions were very strong and coming more frequently and I was passing a lot of blood. The dr decided it was best for the babies to be delivered and for the cerclage to come out - there was just no way to stop the delivery at this point.

When the dr took out the cerclage i went from approximately 2cm immediately to 7cm dialated. They administered an epidural and we waited for me to dilate to 10cm. The decision was given to my husband and me how we wanted to deliver the babies. It seems the lower baby finally turned head down and the upper baby was still transverse, if she didnt turn head down we could lose her in the delivery by her head getting caught if we went vaginally and if we went c-section it may not be any better for her but it would be worse for me. We finally decided on no c-section and what will be will be. Finally we reached 10 cm at approximately 4:30 in the am and off to the operating room we went.

24 week babies is not what we wanted. "This is not the way it should be," we kept saying to each other. We tried to put our fears aside and concentrate on getting the babies out. The boy came out in just a few minutes and they whisked him off to a team of 6 or so people to work on him, he responded to their efforts and Andrew came into the world at 5:11 am on Nov 24th. His sister was now on deck to arrive and thank God she turned and headed straight down head first and was also whisked away to another team of 6 or so people to be worked on. She also responded to their efforts and Ava arrived into the world at 5:21am, 10 minutes after her big brother and was taken off to the nicu to be cared for.

Unbelieveably both had made it thru the delivery and were alive. It was the first of many hurdles to come but it was I think the biggest hurdle to make it over. I passed the first placenta and had a difficult time passing the second. They did a d and c and I lost lots of blood - I needed 4 units of blood and 2 units of plasma. I left the operating room sometime around 9pm I was very groggy so I am not 100% sure on that time. I was then dischargd on Monday and today, Tuesday Nov 28th, I am on my way back to Boston to check on my little ones. Andrew's weight was 1.6 and Ava was 1.9. It seems they are doing pretty well for 24 weeks and the problems they have are not major so my husband and Ii are thankful. The next 3 months or so will be the longest of our lives, I am sure, but every day that goes by is a blessing.

It's a long long haul in front of us and it seems like the last 3 or 4 years to get here is a dream. All I can do now is focus on what's ahead and the health of our children. Guess what? I am finally a mom. It wasnt going to be until March but hey, I'll take it. These babies need me now more than ever and God willing they will be home with us soon enough and healthy too... Thanks to all who have followed my journey and keep the good thoughts coming by. No way are my children "out of the woods". I will still continue to update until my two little ones come home.

Update - Dec 19, 2006

Tomorrow Dec 20th I would be 28 weeks pregnant, but instead I have 2 tiny babies in the NICU at Brigham and Womens hosp in Boston. They are both doing relatively well. No birth defects, no problems with their brains either. They both have gone thru surgery on their hearts, Ava had PDA ( patent ductus arteriosis) and they placed a clip on it on day 7 and 2 weeks to the day later, her brother Andrew decided he wanted the same surgery as his little sister. They both came thru with flying colors and things are looking good right now.

It's day 26 for them today and they are still very small but they are growing, they both still weigh under 2 lbs each but that will change with time. Seeing as though we were not due til March, it's going to be a long time before we even think about bringing our children home, so they have plenty of time to grow before coming home. My husband and I have come so far from infertility to being pregnant then with all the problems we had to have 2 tiny micro preemie babies, our long dream of becoming parents has finally arrived however not as we expected it.

Our happy little family we so yearned for seems so close yet so far away. Tomorrow is another day and we both hope for the best and each day I pray and thank God for what we have and hope that maybe today is the day I finally get to hold either my son or daughter I so desperatly wished for. So many people have expressed concern and have extended their thoughts and prayers and we so appreciate it all. I hope to update again soon with some good news on the twins and thank you all for your thoughts and prayers.

Update - Jan 11, 2007

Update to the ongoing saga....

Finally some good news to report. I got the best present just before Christmas! My husband and I went in to visit the babies on Dec 22nd and I was surprised to find out the nurses had my son all set up to "kangaroo" with me, which means i get to hold my son on my bare chest (skin to skin) for at least an hour. I was thrilled yet a little scared too. Well he settled right in and cozied up to me and fell right to sleep. I cried and my husband cried we were so happy, pictures were taken and nurses from all over came to congratulate me on this happy day for us. Believe it or not, more good news, on Dec 24th we were in for another surprise, I got to hold my daughter, what wonderful Christmas presents I received this year.

My husband thought it was important for me to hold the babies first, thinking it may help with my milk production. Even though I felt selfish, I still enjoyed it beyond words can say. Well, on Dec 30th and 31st my husband got his turn to hold our children. He was the proudest daddy on the earth when he got to hold his son for the first time and then the next day to hold his little girl. Looking back now, the babies have come a long way, they have doubled their weight and should see 3lbs soon. Both are healthy and each day they seen stronger and stronger. There are no longer any needles or iv lines sticking out of them only "leads" which are held on by tape to check their temp or oxygen level.

Today is Thursday and the babies are now 31 weeks old and have been on the "outside" for 7 weeks now. They have come a long way and have a long way to go but things look good. Finally some good news for anyone that may be following my story. Thanks again for the well wishes and I hope to update again soon with more good news.

Update - Feb 2, 2007

Ten long weeks have passed since the arrival of my twins. Its been 2 months now and things are going well. Andrew was taken off of the ventilator and placed on cpap- it helps keep a constant pressure in the lungs so they never fully deflate - it makes it easier for him to breathe. He was on it for a little bit and now he has moved to just a low flow of oxygen administered through the nose prongs everyone is so familiar with. He weighs nearly 4lbs now, he is at 3lbs 10oz as of today. My husband and I are no longer "kangarooing" with Andrew, we are now holding him swaddled in a blanket just like a full term baby! I gave him a real bath just 2 days ago. I can't believe how well he is doing.

His sister Ava is also doing well, she was moved from the ventilator to cpap which she is still on but at a low setting. She should move to the nose prongs soon. Ava is at 3lbs 13oz as of today. Ava is a little more delicate than her brother. She doesn't like a lot of noise or to be bothered once she has settled in. Seems like I might have my hands full with this little princess and I couldn't be happier. Both children are maintaining their own body temperature and should be out of the isolette and into a "crib" soon. They are both still in the icu but soon should be moved to an intermediate area and from there the next step is coming home. I will continue with the updates, more good news to come I hope.

Updated - April 27, 2007

Some great news! As of March 30th, my son Andrew made his first appearance at our home when he was released from the hospital. Previously he had been on cpap and then moved to high flow oxygen then to low flow and was taken off completely, he began feeding from a bottle and gaining weight steadily.The day we took him home was one of the happiest days of recent in our lives. After 127 days in the nicu he finally came home. We are thrilled at his progress since as well are his doctors, he has been gaining apprx 1oz per day which the dr says is right on schedule, at the last weigh in he weighed 8lbs 11oz.

Ava is still in the hospital I am sorry to say, she also was on cpap then moved to high flow oxygen and is currently on low flow oxygen but a very small amount and she now weighs over 9lbs. Ava has other issues as well, she has severe reflux which causes her to "spell" which means her heart rate drops and the oxygen saturation in her blood drops as well and she turns a dusky color, its just horrible to watch and very scary as well. She currently is being fed by an "ng tube" which is a tube placed in the nose, down the throat and into the stomach. This is the way she gets her nourishment, however, due to the severe case of reflux they have moved the tube past the stomach and into the small intestine which helps to alleviate the reflux and cut down on the spells. As of last thursday Ava was transfered out of the nicu and to a rehab facility . Hopefully this is going to be just what she needs and she can get on track to come home. They are already begining to offer her bottles and pt and ot are already working with her. Ava didnt make it home for easter as I thought she might but she WILL be coming home, when? I don't know. But she will come home and that's what's important. All those days ago when they were born I wasn't even sure they were going to make it but now its not IF they come home, its just WHEN and with Andrew home now we are halfway there and the light at the end of the tunnel is getting brighter every day.

I hope to update soon on Ava's anticipated arrival at our home.

Updated - May 27, 2007

The final chapter of a long saga.... update to existing story.... after spending 179 days between the nicu at the hospital and then going to rehab, I am very proud to say that my daughter Ava Marie has finally joined her brother at home. On May 22nd we brought her home with a low flow of oxygen and 2 different monitors to measure oxygen saturation and apnea. She is doing very well (as is her brother) Ava is currently 11lbs 3oz, she has come a very long way from that little tiny 1lb 9oz. I am truly amazed when I look at her. Andrew has not been weighed recently but we did an "at home" weight with our own scale and he is about 12lbs, give or take a few ounces. It's hard to believe he weighed just 1lb 6oz at birth.

I dont know if my husband and I really realize just how lucky we are to have these two babies that were so very small and so very sick finally come home. Now, even with the monitors and the oxygen and the medications etc., we can start to feel like a complete family - no more "visiting" the hospital or the rehab - our babies are home where they belong and we are now a complete family. after the years "trying" and then the weeks and months after they arrived its just now begining to feel like a "real family" . Thanks to all who have followed my story and I will update on how the "twins" are doing in the future.

Updated - Aug 13, 2007

The babies are doing well Ava is now off of the oxygen and is down to just 2 medications. Both babies now weigh a whopping 15+ pounds! Can you believe it?

I just want to end this by saying this forum provided me with an outlet, a place to vent and a feeling that someone was listening to me that actually knew what I was going through. It helped me through some tough times, I kept thinking if my story helps just one other person out there then it is worth it. Now, however, my story has outgrown this website, happily I no longer have an infertility story, my infertility story has changed to something else... a family story... a long one with a very bumpy start. I hope that everyone who is searching finds the answers they are looking for and if anyone wishes to continue and follow my story please do so. All are welcome, just as i felt welcomed here.

Thank you to everyone and God Bless.



 


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