Tag Archives: ttc

6dp5dt: Red blood, a faint BFP & an award

Long time no blog. Again. My absences have not been intentional and I can assure you that I am being equally lax about everything else in my life, if that helps? I’ve wanted to update you all on my progress but I. Just. Couldn’t.

On Monday morning WordPress notified me that it was the one year anniversary of my blog. As is typical of me at the moment, but atypical when I’m not drugged up on whore-moans, I took a miserable view of this anniversary and thought back to all of my hopes and expectations in the run up to IVF cycle one. This year has had plenty of highs but the lows have been the lowest that I have ever experienced. It’s been a very testing year and as I near the end of my IVF#2 2ww I can only hope that the next year is a brighter one.

I am currently PUPO with a grade 4bb blastocyst and a Morula. Last cycle I only had 2 Morulas. This is definite progress. Here they are:
infertility, ivf, icsi, endometriosis, 6dp5dt, infertility blog 2013, embryos, grade 4bb blastocyst, morula

It’s an awful pic, I was disappointed with it. The one of the left is the blastocyst & the one on the right that you can barely see is a morula. On day 3, 4 of the 6 embryos were looking good at 7, 8, 9 & 12 cells. On day 5 we had 2 Morulas, a 2cc blast and a 4bb blast. We agreed to transfer the two blasts. By the time of the transfer the 2cc blast had started to arrest so she put back the 4bb and one of the morulas. On day 6 nothing had made it to freeze. I think it’s that fact that put me back in my skunky funk.*

Then I noticed that Mrs But IF over at had nominated me for a Super Sweet Blogging Award. This could not be more appropriate right now given the ridiculous amount of carbs that I am craving and the batch of 24 cookies that I baked on Sunday and barely shared with anyone! I am letting this nomination be my motivation to get back in the chair and blog about things that aren’t all doom and gloom.

So here goes:


Thank the blogger(s) who nominated you.

Thank you Mrs But IF, I really appreciate this opportunity to blog about some other than my own misery! (And cramps, lots and lots of cramps).

Answer 5 super sweet questions.

Include the Super Sweet Blogging award image in the blog post.

infertility, ivf, icsi, 6dp5dt, cramps, endo, endometriosis, infertility blog 2013

Nominate 12 other bloggers.

The questions:


Can I have both please? Since the super speedy return of the endometrioma (sung to the tune of Return of The Mac, obvs) the endo diet has gone out of the window and I am once again a sugar-addicted monster. Try telling me not to eat cookies for breakfast, see what happens. I’m going to choose cookies because my homemade ones are so much better than my homemade cake.


Chocolate. Always.


My mum’s homemade scones with low sugar, lumpy raspberry Jam (Jello? Whatever the J in PBJ is) and lashings of super thick Cornish clotted cream. She made me a batch on embryo transfer day last cycle so for reasons somewhere between superstition and insanity I haven’t had any this time (see also: no facials or pedicures, as they are also possible reasons that last time didn’t work).


When I’m awake.


At the moment Mr Turtle has taken to calling me mumma bear, which is pretty sickly sweet. That will sting if this cycle doesn’t work.

The nominations:

This has been the most fun part of this award. I decided to include a mixture of the blogs that I’ve been following for the past year as well as some new blogs and some blogs that are new to me. Some aren’t even infertility blogs would you believe it? I do not expect people to continue this chain mail but it got me sat upright and writing so I’m happy to be doing it. I do, however, recommend hitting up the below blogs, they are awesome. And in no particular order here they are:

Ok this one may seem like a bit of a cheat as she nominated me BUT, read and tell me it’s not justified. She sums up so eloquently the difficulty in trying to live fully while balancing two possible futures that are the complete opposite of one another.

Betty is fabulous. She will be attempting IVF cycle two shortly. Cycle one was a bit of a non-starter. She makes fantastic book recommendations when you need distractions during the IVF 2ww, and she draws fabulous (I’m hoping this wasn’t a one-off).

Somehow this lady managed to get 4 eggs from 3 follicles. 2 eggs fertilised and she is having them put back tomorrow. Please follow her and wish her all the luck in the world for this, her second IVF cycle.

Like me, she suffers with severe male factor infertility. She recently miscarried her first BFP from her second FET and she needs hugs. In spite of this she is a great support on Twitter @libhope.

Sarah is newly pregnant after IVF#1 following 10 IUI BFNs. I like to read success stories when they are entertaining and not just gushy. Sarah does this well. And her cat is adorable/ an asshole, much like mine.

Pregnant with “Turkey” and a new foster-mom to two girls after 4 miscarriages.

Georgette recently suffered a chemical pregnancy and has 2 frosties on ice. Her blog has a ridiculous amount of useful info on immune issues, go take a look.

Theresa cycled alongside me last summer and is the proud new mumma to IVF twins Abigail and Miles, you can catch her on Twitter at @runnergrl819, she’s pretty awesome and they are adorable.

We cycled together last summer and she is now a proud new mum to a little IVF baby girl. We are diagnosis twin as her husband is severe male factor and she spots for the second half of her cycles just like me. How lucky are we?!

Lydia is a relatively newbie blogger. She is currently on a short break after IUI#4 failed and her in-laws are crazy, just like mine.

The best blog ever written about depression. Ally’s hilarious cartoons explain this awful condition so beautifully. I’ve spent a lot of time hunting for corn recently. There is no corn, I repeat, there is no corn.

A food blog. For anyone attempting the Endo Diet or the Low GI diet this website is a godsend. Her raw brownies rock my world, as do so many others.

*tiny small print that you really should ignore…
I noticed a little blood on my liner today and tested and it was a faint BFP. I have never seen that second line in years and years of trying and I am terrified. Just when I calmed down and stopped shaking enough to question if this was really happening I started bleeding dark red blood. So far no clots, but it’s not spotting, it’s bleeding. Yuck. I really need this to be the start not the end. Pretty sure I’ll have a sleepless night before retesting in the morning. Wish me luck.


Filed under IVF cycle 2

The Infertility Lessons

Apparently it’s National Infertility Awareness Week, I figured that was as good a time as any to pull my head out of the sand that it has been buried in for the past 2 months. I start Burselin injections on 3rd May so I really need to accept that IVF cycle 2 is about to be all systems go…

If anybody fertile said “everything happens for a reason” in relation to my infertility I would knock them out. That said, I try to believe it because otherwise everything just seems so f*cking pointless. I’ve spent the last 3+ years on a quest of self improvement. I’ve lost 30 lbs, started an English degree, explored the possibilities of other careers & put the wheels in motion so that one day I can escape my day job. I’ve discovered running, yoga, pilates & kung fu. I joined a fancy gym with a nice pool. I’ve hired a cleaner and had a clear out. I’ve discovered slow cooking, I make better use of my freezer & do grocery shopping online. My diet is now dairy free, gluten free & sugar free. I feel like I’m running out of things to get better at.

I had a moment of clarity this morning when I was going through this list in my head and thinking what else I could possibly work on before motherhood & then I realised the thing that has been going on in the background this whole time: my relationship with my husband has evolved.

To put things into perspective, I will have been with my husband for 13 years in September, we’re pretty tight. But things are better now. So much better.

We got together when I was 15 & he was 16. We were two fiesty, loud, opinionated teenagers and looking back it amazes me that we made it through those first few years. Everything was so incredibly intense. I loved him so much I could strangle him. His opinion mattered so much to me that when we disagreed it drove me crazy. Our fights were heated & loud. We’d laugh til we cried & we spent every second of every day together. He is incredibly funny and silly but he’s also completely able to blend in and behave, which I am not & never have been able to.

I commented once that I felt like the infertility had fundamentally changed me and made me less sparkly. Actually, I think I sparkle more. At least when I’m with him. Perhaps only when I’m with him – my friendships are suffering as a result of all the babies that my friends keep having!

Since we started this journey my cousin’s wife died of ovarian cancer aged 33, my house flooded & we had to move out for 8 weeks while it was completely renovated (I love you house insurance!) and Mr Turtle lost his job & was unemployed for 6 weeks.

What I’ve realised is that if you can function each day, holding down a stressful and high-powered job in the city managing a team of people over two continents when your entire world is falling apart, things don’t get any more difficult. When life is as hard as it gets, it doesn’t get harder. I’ve learnt what is important to me & I’ve learnt that while we disagree on small things we are completely and absolutely in alignment on the big things.

I love how he just has to take one look at me on a bad day & he’ll fetch me a hot water bottle. I love that he’ll help me cook weird and wonderful meals to fit in with my ridiculous dietary requirements & I love that he’ll then go and eat fish and chips with his mates when I’m not looking.

I love that he’s given up booze again in the run up to this cycle & is back in the swing of exercising every day before work (and he’s getting buff – think Eminem in the “Love the way you lie” video. Mmmm)

I love that although he doesn’t do fiction he read through my first creative writing assignment really carefully and made some amazingly astute observations and suggested improvements. I feel like I am one half of a team that would be incredible parents, or incredible fun buddies who travel the world leaving chaos in our midst. If there is only one thing I can be completely and utterly certain on it is him.

We don’t need to fight anymore. There is nothing on this earth worth fighting over.


Filed under IVF cycle 2

IVF Round Two… Go!

What a week: Pancake day, Valentines day, my first run post-op – man did that feel good – and then my appointment letter came through for my next IVF cycle!!!

Pancake day
Is pancake day a thing outside of the UK? I was considering just ignoring it given that I’m sticking to The Endo Diet but I found a recipe for gluten free, dairy free pancakes that consisted of 1 mashed banana & 2 eggs cooked in a little coconut oil. YUM!


I covered it in pecans, cocoa nibs & agave syrup & it was DELISH.

Valentines Day
This consisted of a trip to see Die Hard & a card from D that made me cry. Inside he wrote some really sweet things & at the end he put ‘don’t ever change’ *sob*.


And finally, in 10 days I will be discussing round 2 with the IVF hospital. This means that I could start as early as April, although I think I’ll actually be starting in May because of my holiday. I am excited and am focusing on getting my body back in shape between now and then.

Things are finally moving again! X


Filed under IVF cycle 2

Two pregnancy announcements, two reactions

I was numb to my news, I blogged about that numbness and less than 24 hours later I was sobbing about it. It really is an emotional roller coaster this infertility lark. The floodgates opened and it all came pouring out. I was given the diagnosis on Monday afternoon and then I had a very busy week at work. On Saturday and Sunday I had far too much alone time, which meant that I had to really face how I was feeling. It turned out I was not feeling too great.

D had just calmed me down when I felt my iphone vibrate in my pocket. I took it out and would you believe it there was a 12 week scan photo staring back at me. Needless to say the iPhone was thrown across the bedroom and the sobbing started again. The scan pic belonged to a guy friend from our circle, one of the last few childless couples. Bad timing.

And then this evening I am home alone again after another busy day in the office. I checked my reader to see that Kim has got her BFP. I could not be happier. I think that this is Kim’s 5th cycle (2x fresh, 3x frosty).

I am going to use my happiness for Kim to send my friend a congratulatory text as I can’t quite muster up the genuine happiness for him just yet. It will come with time though, it always does. It just takes longer than it used to now that I’ve been stuck here for so long.


Filed under IVF #1 - the aftermath

Things to do before IVF nĂºmero uno

I am totally stealing this idea from someone else’s blog but I liked it. So, as it’s less than 3 weeks (sh!t!!) until I get started here are some things that I am going to do in order to chill myself out & get mentally prepared:

  • Join a new gym. My current one is scabby and it doesn’t have a pool. The new one is twice as expensive and 3 times nicer – which is more bang for your buck as far as I am concerned.
  • Go to said new gym 3 times a week & swim lots as I can still do that throughout my ivf journey & pregnancy if I should be so lucky.
  • Go for at least one long walk somewhere pretty with DH, take photos & upload at least one pic to here as proof that I did it!
  • Spend a morning at the weekend reading a newspaper. Just reading a newspaper. Not a free newspaper full of sensationalised rubbish, but a good one with quality journalism in it. I will not do this while waiting for the washing machine to finish a cycle, I will simply be reading, no multitasking.
  • Fill in my IVF paperwork BEFORE THE DAY OF THE APPOINTMENT, I am incredibly adept at leaving boring things until the last minute and stressing myself out. Not this time!
  • Go out for dinner with my husband’s new boss who seems lovely and his girlfriend. Because I am nosey and I love making new friends and THEY DON’T HAVE CHILDREN YET. Plus it’s inevitable that this is going to happen soon so it’s better that it happens before I’m an emotional nutjob!
  • Tidy my spare room. Our house flooded last year and we had to put everything into storage and move out while the insurance company fixed it up. My spare room is where boxes that I can’t face unpacking and sorting through go to die. They are piled very high. I am allergic to dust. Every attempt at this so far has involved me giving up within the hour, but I want a nice, calm, tidy house for when this is all happening.
  • Go to Yoga twice a week. There is an amazing yoga studio 2 mins from my office and they do 45minute classes at lunchtime. I bought a 10 class pass 3 months ago; it’s still got 7 classes left on it. Must try harder!
  • Write a list of questions for my IVF appt on Thursday. If there is one thing that NHS IVF docs are great at it’s rushing you and making you feel like you shouldn’t be asking a question. I will write this list and I will stand my ground and get all of my queries answered.
  • Spend a weekend in Rome with my husband eating and drinking and sightseeing and laughing. I fly out on Friday and back the following Monday and I cannot wait.
  • Go to acupuncture and RELAX.
  • Get into the routine of getting up early enough to inject myself before leaving for work.
  • Get into the routine of going to bed early enough to make the above point possible.
  • Get my hair cut. It got really thin and flat when I was on clomid and now it’s starting to thicken out again I need to get it cut regularly to encourage the thickening, especially as it’s probably going to fall out again pretty soon!

Once I say that I’m going to do something I’m pretty good at doing it. You are all witnesses to this list now. I’d better get out of bed now or I’ll never go to bed early enough this evening!

Enjoy your Sundays x

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Filed under The countdown to IVF #1

How much hope is too much?

I like having goals: something to work towards; something to tick off; something to count down to; something to make sure that your life stays on track & that everything works out as planned. That makes me sound far more organised than I actually am, but countdowns are my thing.

It’s 2 weeks tomorrow until my IVF appointment at the hospital. It would seem that counting down to this isn’t enough for my baby-obsessed brain and I am spending my spare time (what’s that? Oh, it’s the time that i spend at my desk not doing my job) wondering when I will actually commence the stabbing. Then once I’ve started to wonder that I can’t help but start to calculate the month that my potential spawn would be born. Then I panic and scold myself for getting carried away and worry that the little glimmer of hope that I might actually be a mother next year, will have somehow jinxed the outcome of the IVF cycle. It’s like if I believe that it might happen, then it won’t happen.

So, my question is is there such a thing as too much hope? Am I just setting myself up for a fall if I believe that I might be a mother next year? I like to be a positive person but this whole TTC thang has well and truly sucked my happiness reserves dry and it takes all my strength to simply smile some days.

Yuck. I miss the old me who laughed until she got face ache and talked about what her children would look like without wondering if she would end up adopting or childless.

I’m going to cook myself something nice now to cheer myself up and maybe let a little bit of hope creep in… But not too much.

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Filed under The countdown to IVF #1

New beginnings

Welcome to my brand new shiny blog!

I am here because I am about to start my first attempt at IVF and I have lots of thoughts and feelings that, try as they might, my friends and family don’t understand. I need this to be somewhere that I can blow off some IVF-related steam in the hope that I can then talk about something else with my poor, long-suffering husband.

I have spent the last 2 years being tested for everything under the sun and the current theory is that I have mild PCOS and, although I do ovulate, I do so “inadequately” which leaves me with low progesterone levels. My husband’s sperm are few and far between, deformed and lazy. So basically, either of us would struggle to conceive on our own and yet we attracted each other like a pair of fertilically-challenged magnets.

I have spent at least a year googling all sorts of things that I shouldn’t have in a desperate search for justifaction that the way that I am feeling is ok. I kept reading blogs written by these smart, funny ladies who were feeling what I was feeling. I have finally taken the leap to join this community of brave, fierce ladies who can laugh in the face of adversity and keep on fighting.

Come, join me! x


Filed under The countdown to IVF #1