Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Emotional Mess

Yes, that is what I am an emotional mess & it is no wonder with all the things going on right now, not to mention all the silly hormones I am on for the upcoming IVF transfer.

Daddy as I have mentioned before is not going to get any better & it is really hard to deal with, as you can imagine. He doesn't seem to know who any of us kids are & sometimes doesn't even respond to Mama. We had a meeting with the Hospice social worker last week & they will start coming in at least twice a week. The meeting was difficult & sad, but unfortunately it had to be done.

I am still progressing towards a tentative IVF transfer date of early/mid Feb. I should know more on Friday after I go in for my next monitoring session with labs & ultrasound.

The adoption process is pretty much the same, but we do have some concerns about not getting any response from birthmothers. I have a call into our coordinator & hopefully she will call me back today. I will give more updates later.

Then to top it all off we are in deadline at work & our magazine goes out next Tuesday. Now since I was out of work for 7.5 days with me being sick & then Daddy being in the hospital it has made my work load heavier. I am finally getting caught up, but I am just so tired, emotional & have a terrible tension headache that meds don't seem to touch. Oh & I totally forgot to mention that I am on Weight Watchers & I had lost 13 lbs but I have gained 5.5 in the last week - I am a stress eater.

I need some Calgon or a serious vacation.


Tuesday, January 22, 2008

I'm it!!!

I was tagged by Kristi

The Rules: Link (somehow I couldn't do that...) to the person that tagged you and post the rules on your blog.

Share 5 random and/or weird facts about yourself on your blog, -OR-
Share the 5 top places on your “want to see or want to see again” list, -OR-
Share 5 things you never pictured being in your future when your were 25 years old.

Tag a minimum of 5, maximum of 10 random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs (I couldn't do that either...)

Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog. The tagees have a choice of which they want to do.

Here are 5 random facts about me:
1. I have a scar above my right eye (sort of under my eyebrow) from the multiple eye surgeries I had as a
child to correct cataracts. I still can't see very well out of that eye.

2. I have always wanted to ride a hot air balloon, but a I deathly afraid of heights (go figure). We even had
tickets to take a ride for a year, but we never went.

3. I would love to own a lot of land & have a ton of animals, including a horse.
4. I became a Christian at the age 15.
5. I hated church camp. I know everyone loves it, but I was a shy kid (sometime still a little shy) & it was a
nightmare for me.


OK- I don't really have anyone to tag, now what???

It's almost time

I got my newest orders from my IVF nurse yesterday afternoon & it is getting closer to the time for the transfer. Yesterday morning I went to REACH for labs & ultrasound, then my nurse called me with me orders. I am now doing 5 units of Lupron & I started my Estrogen patches yesterday too. I am to continue my Lupron shots until told otherwise & I change out my patches every other day. On the 23rd I will remove the one I am wearing now & replace it on a different site. Then on the 25th I remove that one & replace with 2 patches, the 27th I replace with 3 & the 29th & 31st I replace with 4 patches. My lower half is going to look like a checker board or poka dots. Then on Feb. 1st I will go in for more labs & ultrasound + they will also be able to tell me when the actual transfer will be. The tentative date right now is the 2nd week in Feb, but it looks like it may be later in the week or the weekend. This is getting so exciting - I can't wait!!!

Monday, January 21, 2008

Where's the snow???

I am not sure how all of you feel, but I was a little disappointed that we didn't get very much snow. The snow was really pretty while it was falling, but no accummulation - Boo!!! I know all the kids in the area were disappointed too. I had already planned on staying in all weekend & cleaning the house from top to bottom. It really needed it, but I ended up not doing it. I did wash a lot of clothes & straighten up some but Chris is off today & said he would clean the house. What a great husband I have, I am so grateful.

Yesterday I went with my oldest sister Karen & Mama to visit my 90 year old grandmother, Gram. It was great to see her. She only lives in Charlotte which is about 30 minutes from our house, but since we changed churches a couple years ago we don't see her as often now (my sibling & I, Mama still goes to church with Gram on Sunday mornings). We had a great time with her.

We also went to go visit Daddy at the nursing home before we went to church last night & I wasn't really happy with our visit. He looked & acted a lot more alert last week. Of course Mama, did remind me that it was late in the day & I was used to seeing him earlier in the day. He didn't really seem to know who Karen, Chris or I was, which was a little distrubing, but he knew who Mama was. Unfortunately this will probably continue, but I am just not ready to deal with it yet. He did so good last week & talked to us, but not yesterday. His eyes were almost translucent & he was looking right through us, it was just weird. Mama kept asking him if he knew who we were & he didn't respond at all. She said after we left he ate dinner & she quizzed him again to see if he knew who had been there & he still didn't answer her, so who knows. Daddy did have a lot of visitors on Saturday morning, some good friends of the family came up from Ocean Isle Beach to see him & he knew who they were & talked to them, but that was gone by yesterday. We even asked him about his visit with them & still no response. Maybe it was just a bad day for him, who knows.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Returning to life as we know it - or something close to it

My sibling & I, even my mom all went back to work on Friday & it actually felt really good. It was a little hard to get out of the bed & go into work but it was worth it. I wasn't sure I would make it through the day still being sick & taking all my meds, but I did. Speaking of my meds, I think they might be making me sicker. They are tearing my stomach up, but I am going to try & tolerate it so I can get better. I really don't like the idea of switching antibiotics & starting over. The pred is making me really wired too, I am getting on my own nerves so I am sure everyone around me is ready for me to come off of them. Luckily I only have 3 more days of pred, including today - YEAH!!!

Daddy is doing a lot better, much to our surprise. We really didn't think we would be where we are today, but he & God have surprised us once again. He is a very strong man. Mama said that yesterday they CNA at Universal said he feed himself, which is great. He hasn't eaten since last weekend & all he had been on was IV fluids. Bless his heart, I know he must have been hungry. They also moved him off puree foods & up to mechanical soft which is really tiny bites of food but he didn't care at all.

I talked to Mama today & she said his personality is back too, which we haven't seen in months. She went to see him this morning & told him she was glad to see him & that he looked good. He responded to her, "No, you look good!" Daddy has always been a big flirt when it came to Mama, he would give her compliments all day long if she would allow it. I am not real sure if he knows who we are though, he looks at us with a blank stare & doesn't really respond but Mama says he gives her that look too. At least he calls her by name. We don't think he knows what happened either, which is fine with us. I am not real sure how much he would comprehend or absorb anyway. Thanks for all the prayers, thoughts & kind words on his behalf I can't tell you how much we appreciate it.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Babies everywhere...

I forgot to tell you what Dr. Crain at REACH had to say about my biopsy. The test results didn't come back exactly as he had hoped but they weren't bad either. A good result is >20% of marginal progesterone in the uterine lining & mine was 30%. Which you would think would be good, but no. So he told us we could go ahead & proceed as normal with the IVF cycle or seek treat to try to get the best possible stats for my uterine lining.

Well the treatment, if we choose to except it, would be a DNC (I know yuck), 2 months for Lupron Depot (which is not the same Lupron I am taking now), antibiotics, pred, progesterone shots & then another biopsy. He also told us we don't have to do the treatment at all, he felt completely comfortable with my chances of getting pregnant without the treatment but of course it was completely up to us. Well I am not dummy, we choose to go ahead with the IVF cycle as planned. We can always do treatment later if this first cycle doesn't work.

So I spoke to my IVF nurse this morning & he gave me my orders to continue taking my Lupron shots each night & to report to the office first thing Monday morning for labs & an ultrasound. He also said I will most likely start my estrogen patchs Monday afternoon. Now this means that we should be on schedule to have the transfer the second week in Feb, wow that is not far away at all. I am getting so excited. I could know a month from now that I am pregnant - yeah. Lets all start saying our prayers early.

Then I got an email from Lifetime yesterday afternoon for an urgent birthmother need. There is a birthmother in Nevada, I think, that is due in Feb with a caucasion boy. The material grandfather was diagnosed with FSP muscular distrophy which is commonly passed down to boy babies. It also said that the baby appeared to be growing as normal in uterio at the most recent ultrasound. Well this made us all a little nervous, especially since none of us had ever heard of this type of MD. So we started looking it up online & found that this type of MD doesn't even show up until the child is a teen or young adult. 50% of those who have the disease are able to walk & most live a normal live span. Well we didn't like our odds & the fact that you would always be worried if our child would end up getting sick later in life. I went ahead & emailed our coordinator back & declined our profile to be shown to this birthmother - it is just too risky.

Now can you believe that all of this happened in one day, on top of everything already going on with Daddy being in the hospital & me being sick. Talk about stress, it is a wonder we are all still walking around today. We need some rest. Luckily it snowed over night & Chris got to sleep in a little & we didn't head out to see Daddy today until 11:30 so we all had some needed rest. We should all caught up on our sleep over the weekend.

Tears from Angie

This was my comment to Chris & Mama late Tuesday night. I actually woke up on Tuesday morning really tired from the day before, but felt like I was turning the corner from being sick. Then as the day progressed I really went down hill, my first clue was when I told my oldest sister Karen that I didn't feel good & she said what's wrong & I said I don't know I just feel terrible, with tears rolling down my face. As the night progressed I was crying about everything, coughing my head off & by 9pm I couldn't stop coughing. I coughed so much I made my throat swell & was having trouble swallowing & breathing. Of course you guessed it, I cried some more. Then Chris & Mama both cornered me at the same time & said it is time for you to go downstairs to the ER. Yes, I cried even more, "I don't want to go to the ER." Well to make this sorry much shorter I agreed to go the the urgent care first thing Wed. morning instead. Then on our way home from the hospital Mama called (11:30pm) & said she would arrange for me to have an appointment with her doctor (she is an RN for an Internal Medicine doctor) & I needed to be there by 8:15am no questions asked & of course I agreed. How could I not, Mama didn't really give me a choice, she said this is what you are going to do.

So I went & guess what I had a sinus infection with some bronical inflammation which is why I couldn't breath. He gave me antibiotics & pred & then proceeded to tell me that I needed to wait 1-2 days before I went back to see Daddy. Yep you guessed it I cried again & he quickly told me just to keep my distance from him like I had already been doing & everything would be fine.

Then later that morning we had an appointment with REACH to get the results of my byopsy I had done in Dec. to check the lining of my uterus. While talking to him I cried again & I don't even remember what made me cry that time, it must have been something small & silly. It may have been just as simple him asking how I was, I really don't remember.

Then once I got the hospital & met up with my Mama & siblings to eat lunch I was telling them about all my appointments that morning & they made me cry too. They snapped at me & I just bursted into tears. I don't mean little ones I was sobbing like a child I was crying so hard. Of course once I calmed down & assured them that they didn't hurt my feeling that I was just really fragile & had been crying all morning. Mama said oh great now we have to be extra sensitive to you. We had been snappy with each other all week & had been laughing about it, we all knew we were very tired/stress so none of us were taking it to heart. We are a very close family & don't fight so it was all in fun/games. We had to pass the time somehow.

More updates

Daddy is now out of the hospital & back in the nursing home. 2 hours after I wrote the previous blog my sister called & said he would be discharged this afternoon & taking back to the nursing home. He is doing so much better today. He is talking to us in complete sentences instead of 1 or 2 word answers & he is moving around & waving at us. When Mama walked in his room this morning she told him she sure was glad to see him & he responded, "I am glad to see you too. You made my day! That made me cry. She really needed to hear that, yesterday was a really hard day for her.

Daddy even got a little attitude with Mama this afternoon when we were leaving, which may not sound like a good thing but it really is. It actually takes more mentally to form an argumentative tone then to just answer a simple question which is what he has been doing this week, if he answered us at all. We were trying to get him to tell us bye as we were leaving & he was not responding or we even thought he was ignoring us. Mama kept asking him if he was going to tell us bye & he said, "I am trying Sandie (that's Mama)". Which we all died laughing & that was a perfect answer & a great way to end a visit with him today.

Now we are all planning on going back to work tomorrow & try to return to live as we know it. We are all really glad about that, seriously. Being at the hospital from 9am - 11pm for the last 5 days has been extremely exhausting, especially for me since I got sick again. I am starting to feel a little better but I still got a long way to go. I am only on day 2 of my antibiotics & pred - 10 more to go.

Daddy update

It has been a long week for us but is now stable enough to be in his own room & out of NSICU. The diagnosis on him is not very good which is not what we were hoping but at the same time we were not surprised either. There is really nothing can do for Daddy at this point or at all. There is no corrective surgery that can or should be done to stop the bleeding or correct any damage the stroke may have made. The tumors Daddy has & we have known about since this past summer has grown aggressively & that is what causes the stroke & brain bleeding. This also was not a surprise to us, we just didn't think the tumors would grow this fast & neither did his neurosurgeon. But Daddy's case is in no way a text book case, it is one like none other so they have no standard to go by. The doctors are pretty much making decisions as we go & suggestions as we go.

When we meet with the doctor late Monday afternoon & he brought us the bad news he also told us that we need to start preparing ourselves for an end of life situation. He can't tell us how long he as, again since Daddy's case is so rare there is nothing to compare it to for an estimated time of life. So we made some hard decisions & much to our surprise Mama has already made a lot of arrangements. She didn't want us as a family to have to make all the decisions in the last hour. The doctor also suggested that we have a feeding tube peg placed in Daddy to use at a later date if we need it. He doesn't need one right now but at least we will not have to come back to the hospital to have one placed at a later date. The tube was placed yesterday.

Daddy's state right now is that he is stable. There is not breathing tube, he is awake but not opening his eyes very much. He will follow commands when prompted & will sometimes open his eyes & speaks on occassion - although if you didn't know him or his groggy voice you would think it was just jiberish. He of course is not getting out of bed, but he didn't to that before he had a stroke so there is no change there. He will be going back to the nursing home & hospice has already been called to come assess him. We are hoping they can assist the nursing home in his care & the nursing home is very happy to have him back. Daddy's bed is still available & waiting on him.

Please continue to keep Daddy, our family, the hospital staff, doctors & the nursing home staff in your prayers as we transition to the next stage with Daddy. Thanks so much for everyone's kind thoughts & prayers thus far, we really appreciate it.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Daddy

Hi! I wanted to ask for prayers for my Daddy & our family at this time, please. My Dad is currently at CMC in Charlotte in the Neuro Surgical ICU after suffering a hemmorhatic stroke (hemorrhaging brain bleed). We are not real sure when it all started but the nursing home transported him to NorthEast in Concord on Sunday afternoon. They called Mama & said he just didn't look well so they decided to send him to the hospital. After a CT scan they quickly noticed bleeding on the brain & called in a neurologist for a consult. To make a long story short, they said it was okay for us to transport him to CMC Charlotte where Daddy's neurosurgeon currently works. He is stable but in critical condition.

The neuro team were suppose to meet at 7am this morning to discuss all the current patients & now Daddy will be on their list. Daddy's doctor, Van De Veer will be doing rounds today so he can assess Daddy himself. When we left him last night at 11pm he waved at us & gave our preacher, Kirk the thumbs up so he is responsive & aware but not really talking. I hope to give more details as I know them.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Furbabies






I thought I would share pics of our furbabies with you. Yes, I know we have a lot of pets (my husband calls it the zoo) but I have a soft spot for animals & kids, I just can't help it. Since we don't have kids yet I have surrounded myself with the next best thing. It does get a little crazy sometimes, but I still love having them all - even Samantha who doesn't care much for Chris.

The first one is Zoie the first cat I got on my own, so she is my baby. Isn't she pretty. The second one is Abbey, she is such a sweet & gentle little girl. The third one is Samantha our not so little trouble maker. Her nickname is little one because we I picked her out at the vet, she was so tiny. She was the runt of the litter & hand raised so she was really tiny. Little did we know she would grow up to be 16 lbs & eat us out of house & home. The last one is Spencer, the only boy in the bunch & he is proud of it. He is our pride & joy. What a fun dog he is - everyone should have a Spencer, honestly.

Oh & if you didn't guess they are shown in age order. How else would a mom name their children.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Hormones rising

Last night I had my first injection of hormones (Lupron) for the upcoming IVF transfer. My mom actual did the shot, but Chris has done them in the past. She is an RN so Chris would rather she do it since it requires drawing meds out of a vile into the needle. All the previous shots Chris has given me were pre-filled needles or a dial up pen - both fail proof.

So far I can't tell any difference & lets up it stays that way. It did leave a mark on my belly but no bursing, which is what I am used to. I still have knots on my hips from the Progesterone & oil injections my mom had to give me during the holidays for 10 days. Unfortunately I will have to do those again. They are pretty painful (mostly afterwards), but it needs to be done & Mama is pretty good at it.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Back to work

I am back to work today & very glad. I really missed life as normal & even missed being at work. I am still a little sluggish, but I am feeling better. It will be at least a week or so before all the crud is gone, but at least my fever is gone.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Still sick and tired

Yes, believe it or not I am still sick. I am not sure why I am surprised, the doctor from urgent care told me on Saturday that since this was a virus it would take a long time for me to be well again (maybe 2 weeks). I guess I was hoping he was wrong. He also said that I would get much worse before I got better & boy was he right. There isn't any antibiotics you can take for a virus you just have to wait it out & use over-the-counter meds. I actually thought I would go to work on Monday but boy was I wrong. Yesterday was pretty crummy & so is today. I actually wanted to go to the grocery store last night just to get out of the house. The fact that its in the 70's yesterday & today doesn't help my cabin fever much either. I am so tired of being sick it makes me want to cry. I am really hoping to go back to work tomorrow so lets all keep our fingers crossed.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

SICK & TIRED!!!

Have you ever seen the Bill Cosby stand up routine or even The Cosby Show? Well he would say that "sick" is always followed by " and tired". That is exactly my day summed up in 3 words - SICK & TIRED!!!

Today I gave into Chris & went to the doctor. It was no surprise to me to the hear the doctor say, you have a viral upper respiratory infection & if we don't get a handle on it you may end up with broncitis. That is very normal for me, even if I do go to the doctor it does turn into broncitis, so we shall see what happens this time.


After our visit to urgent care, which only took 15 minutes tops, we headed out to look at houses. I think we are starting to narrow down our search & plan to put our house on the market in the spring. We actually called a listing agent this morning to get him to show us a resale home, but since we weren't going to use him as our agent, he refused to show us the house. Now we are not real sure if this is normal procedure in the real estate business, but for the home owner's sake I hope not. He may have lost a potential seller for this listing - stupid. The neighborhood this particular house is in is a very desirable neighborhood in Concord, again very stupid. We plan to discuss this matter with one of the many realtors we attend church with.

We still haven't really decided if we want a resale or new construction home, it just depends on the location or neighborhood. I just printed out several more houses in the area, mostly resale for us to take a drive by. I love looking at houses, the buying or selling process probably will not near as fun.

Friday, January 4, 2008

My orders

I got a call from my IVF nurse, Shane, yesterday with my orders to prepare me for the upcoming in-vitro procedure. I am to start Lupron injections next Wed evening. If I remember correctly this it to give my doctor control of my body instead of nature taking its course. I have been on it before in 2005 when he treated me for a mild case of endometriosis & I had no complications with it at all. I think we are tentatively scheduled to do the transfer the beginning of Feb & then I will be on bed rest for 2 days. After that we just wait to see if it worked or not.

My meds have been ordered & will be here on Tuesday. I got a call from the specialty pharmacy today so things are moving right along. Our house is going to look like a small pharmacy again with needles, vills in the frige, pills & sharps containers everywhere. Oh boy!

Oh I am also home sick today. I have a had cold & a fever - what fun. I was hoping I was done with sickness for a while since I had the crud over Thanksgiving, but no such luck. I spoke to my IVF nurse to see what I am aloud to take & he said pretty much anything except advil products. I am not sure why but I don't usually take advil anyway so I am good. Now I am off to take some Robitussin & a nap.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

A new year & new beginnings

It's a new year which should be filled with new beginnings, experiences, hopes, dreams & anticipation. What better way to start off the new year then with a new blog. A friend of mine, Kristi, has been trying to get me to start one for some time now & I have finally given in.

This is the journey of a young married Christian couple (is mid 30's young???) as we prayerfully start a family. To get you quickly up to speed we are waiting not only to adopt our first child, but to also have my first IVF treatment with REACH (reproductive endocrinology associates of charlotte) either this month or in Feb. How exciting? We have been contracted with Lifetime Adoption since June '07 & I started back on infertility treatments at REACH in Nov '07. Can you tell we are eager to be parents & we are thankful for the opportunity to try both at the same time! Now we are just waiting as patiently as possible to start our family.

We only ask one thing from you - please keep us, REACH & Lifetime in your thoughts & prayers as we go through this journey together. It will & has been stressful but we are really excited about what it to come.

Oh & I almost forgot to mention that we plan to sell our current house & purchase another this year as well. Although we really haven't decided if we want to build or purchase a resale home yet but it will all come together in due time. So we have a busy year ahead of us but I am really excited about it & look forward to sharing it with you.