Just one person's tale to tell....

I am a 35-year-old journalist who has decided there is no better way to overcome difficult times than to write--feel free to post, comment or just read along. This is my blog about the struggles I endured of trying to conceive. For all those out there who are experiencing the same difficulties--sometimes it is nice to hear that you are not alone.
"I have not failed 10000 times; I have successfully found 10000 ways that do not work." ~ Thomas Edison

Friday, May 28, 2010

This just made my day...

So last night before heading to the theatre to watch SATC 2 (which is exactly what a girl needs every night) I decided to browse the shelves at Chapters. Since getting my Toronto Library card a month ago I have not stepped foot into my beloved Chapters and I started to feel guilty at our fading relationship--so off I went with my iced tea lemonade in hand and debit card tucked away from any purchases. Now it may just be me but I've always gone to the pregnancy and health section to try and find more info on infertility and was constantly frustrated with the lack of books. I have gone to a few libraries but many books are outdated or for reference only (and I want to snuggle up in bed and take it all in --not sit in the library taking notes to show my DH).But I have to admit I hated the thought of having to ask a book clerk where the infertility books were stashed, wanting to avoid that sympathy stare some people give you when they hear you can't conceive. But since I've started this blog and surrounded myself with positivity I can pretty much talk to anyone about infertility-- AND with  complete ease (it took some time but I think eventually you just want to be open about things and share what you are going through). Well as it turns out I was in the wrong section the whole time...and there IS a fertility section with many books on how to conceive. While most of the books discuss issues that don't pertain  to our situation it still put a smile on my face that they existed--and the best part of my trip was discovering " Infertility for Dummies". I love it...you always say that there is one of these books for everything--well now I truly think these publishers are amazing. After reading through the IVF section I might consider buying this book as it really does put everything into general terms for you---as well I thought it would be a great book to give to family members who might have questions or want to know more about what we will be going through. Lesson learned--ask and you shall receive!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Alberta may not fund?!?!

Crossing my fingers for those in Alberta who are looking for funding in IVF......this is so sad as the story says 1 in 6 couples have fertility issues!!
May 20, 2010
Alberta pressed to pay for fertility treatment
By CBC News
An in-vitro fertilization protocol that could save Alberta's health-care system millions of dollars doesn't meet provincial requirements, the government says.
A funding model for in-vitro fertilization that could save Alberta's health-care system millions of dollars doesn't meet provincial requirements, the government says.
Analysts predict Quebec will save $100 million over five years when it begins paying for in-vitro fertilization (IVF) treatments next month, because the covered procedure will reduce the number of multiple births.
But Alberta says IVF doesn't meet the basic criteria for public funding.
"We've looked at these things a couple of years ago," said Howard May, spokesperson for Alberta Health and Wellness. "It needs to be determined that it's medically necessary."
'It needs to be determined that it's medically necessary.'
-Howard May, Alberta Health
Dr. Joseph O'Keane, of the Regional Fertility Program, said IVF clinics usually increase a woman's chance of conception by implanting more than one fertilized embryo in the womb, which also increases the chance of multiple births.

About 30 per cent of IVF couples end up with twins, and infertility groups say multiple births place an unnecessary financial burden on the public health-care system.

"Very often these babies have to stay in the hospitals longer, their moms have to stay in the hospitals longer," said Beverly Hanck, executive director of the Infertility Awareness Association of Canada, who has been fighting for more than a decade to get provincial governments to pay for IVF.
Hanck said Quebec will limit multiple births and save money by using a single embryo transfer protocol, which means only one fertilized embryo will be implanted in a recipient's womb for up to three cycles.
"Each and every treatment will involve transferring only one embryo back into the uterus of the woman," said Hanck, adding that there will be "some leeway on this protocol," and two or three embryos may be implanted at the physician's discretion.
"Alberta will save an absolute minimum of $15 million on their health-care system if they fund IVF treatment," Hanck said.

O'Keane said one in six Canadian couples struggle with infertility.

Robyn Hauck and her husband, who have been trying to have a baby for three years, paid $13,000 to have three fertilized embryos implanted in her womb.
'I also think it is a basic human right to have children.'-Dr. Joseph O'Keane
Hauck said having a baby is important to her.
"I don't think I can put my finger on why it's so important," she said. "It's just something maternal."
O'Keane said IVF funding is warranted for reasons beyond the expected savings to the health-care system: "Economically it's justifiable, in that multiple pregnancies end up costing the system a lot more money, but I also think it is a basic human right to have children."
On Monday, the Manitoba government announced a tax credit that could reimburse prospective parents for about two-thirds of the cost of in-vitro fertilization. Manitoba's credit comes into effect Oct. 1.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Countdown to IVF begins

Just got home from a long day in London and am estatic to report that we will be starting our first IVF cycle this summer!! Our DR is absolutely amazing--going through the entire process and getting this started asap. It has become more evident, after five cycles of Clomid, that I most likely have an excess of scar tissue on the outside of my tubes preventing any communication between my ovaries and my tubes---pretty much the kids aren't getting picked up by the schoolbus!!!

We will meet with our case worker in 3-5 weeks and then depending where I am in my cycle be able to estimate our start date a bit better.
Already we have completed my Day 3 blood work as well as an ultrasound that determined that BOTH my ovaries are in great positions for egg retrieval, and while DR will have to plow his way through a lot of scar tissue, he is more than optimistic that it shouldn't be a problem. (Just one more reason I am extremely relieved that we decided to stay with Dr. Powers at University Hospital considering my history)
We had a brief scare with my left ovary when it popped up on the screen about 5X bigger than my right!! Apparently this is one of the side effects of fertility drugs and should go back to normal next month (seriously thought I had an exploded ovary for a second!).
Also before starting IVF you complete all the bloodwork that you would normally do once you find out you are pregnant...I got seven viles of blood to test everything from HIV, Hep B, Hep C, blood type, along with my FSH levels---in addition my DH had to also get four viles for similar tests and for someone who doesn't do well at the sight of his own blood he was such a trooper!
One more great thing about being in London is we literally walked into the lab for blood tests and right back out with FREE PARKING! :)
I can't wait to meet our case worker and start the countdown to mommyhood!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Well its a day before our consultation and I can honestly say I was not surprised when AF arrived today, meaning our last round of clomid was a BFN! Not sure what to expect tomorrow but I already have my list of questions from all the research I've been reading.  I'm just excited to be taking a new step in this journey. Our appointment is at 2:30 so less than 15 hours to go!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

Surprisingly this weekend was harder for me than I thought--I never considered Mother's Day affecting me but it's just another reminder that after so much aching for Baby Hastings I am still not a Mother or Mother-to-be. I feel guilty having such sad thoughts when I have so much love in my life and so many of those close to me are amazing Mothers that I look up to. I am extremely lucky to still have my mum in my life and never take this for granted, speaking with her every day and making sure I visit at least once every two weeks (if not more). My mother is the strongest person I know who has raised three amazing daughters and is the proud grandmother to my 2 nephews and 2 nieces. One day I hope to make her a grandmother once again.
To my mother--Happy Mother's Day and thank you for always being an inspiration in my life. To my sisters--Happy Mother's Day and thank you for always being my rock, supporting my decisions and most of all just listening. To my friend JC-Happy Mother's Day and thank you for showing me how to be strong (you are an amazing mother and your mom would be proud). To my friend MS--Happy Mother's Day and thank you for showing me that there IS a light at the end of a dark tunnel. To my sister-in-law and all my friends who have been blessed-Happy Mother's Day and thank you for allowing me to be a part of you and your little ones life. I am eternally grateful to each and every one of you.

For those of you still struggling to conceive I like to think of us as Mothers-in-waiting and know that our time will come. Here is a great poem I read on a recent blog that can brighten up your day. *Baby dust to all*

“Happy Mother's Day”

It comes around every year;
but when you have empty arms,
it's very hard to hear.
It's a day to celebrate a mother,
for all the trials she overcame;
and a reminder to an infertile
of her loneliness and shame.
But what really makes a mother,
Is it just conception and birth?
Or is there something more,
that shows a mother's worth?
It's putting your child first,
in everything you do;
it's sacrifice and determination,
and love and patience too.
An infertile woman makes all her plans,
around a child not yet conceived;
she loves them even though they aren't here,
more than she ever could have believed.
She appreciates and understands,
what a blessing that children are;
she works hard for just a chance,
that motherhood is not that far.
All odds are stacked against her,
and yet she still has hope;
everyday is another struggle,
finding ways to help her cope.
So even though her arms are empty,
she can still be a mother too;
So say a special “Happy Mother's Day”
for those waiting for their dreams to come true!

The countdown for consultation....

Only five more days until my DH and I make the 2 hour trek back to London Health Science Centre and I can honestly say it has been a long five months since our last appointment. I always thought we would be driving back full of excitement to see an ultrasound of our baby---but now we are full of excitement to take the next step.
A lot of people have been asking me why we go so far when we live in Toronto and there are so many great facilities in our area and it all comes down to TRUST. Not only does our DR --Dr. Power-- have my entire medical history and saved my life once already (literally)....he has the best bedside manner you could ever ask for in a fertility doctor. He holds your hand and reassures you and when you leave his office you feel as if you have accomplished another step towards becoming a parent. I would drive twice the distance to be under his care.
Making the trek is also not as bad as it sounds. I get to spend 2 hours with my DH before AND after appointments where we get to talk everything over. We have spent a few overnights in London and made them into adventures and everytime it ends in laughter. I was so nervous to get my HSG that I was glad my DH and I came in the night before and spent the night in bed watching movies on our laptop. I can honestly say I cherish the time we have and that we aren't rushing from work to an appointment only to leave each other minutes after to get back to work.

Monday, May 3, 2010

A beautiful poem to give you hope....

I will be a mother!

There are women that become mothers without effort, without thought, without patience or loss
and though they are good mothers and love their children, I know that I will be better.
I will be better not because of genetics, or money or because I have read more books but because I have struggled and toiled for this child.
I have longed and waited.
I have cried and prayed.
I have endured and planned over and over again.
Like most things in life, the people who truly have appreciation are those who have struggled to attain their dreams.
I will notice everything about my child.
I will take time to watch my child sleep, explore and discover.
I will marvel at this miracle every day for the rest of my life.
I will be happy when I wake in the middle of the night to the sound of my child, knowing that I can comfort, hold and feed him and that I am not waking to take another temperature, pop another pill, take another shot or cry tears of a broken dream.
My dream will be crying for me.
I count myself lucky in this sense; that God has given me this insight, this special vision with which I will look upon my child that my friends will not see. Whether I parent a child I actually give birth to or a child that God leads me to, I will not be careless with my love.
I will be a better mother for all that I have endured.
I am a better wife, a better aunt, a better daughter, neighbor, friend and sister because I have known pain.
I know disillusionment as I have been betrayed by my own body.
I have been tried by fire and hell many never face, yet given time, I stood tall.
I have prevailed. I have succeeded. I have won. So now, when others hurt around me, I do not run from their pain in order to save myself discomfort.
I see it, mourn it, and join them in theirs.
I listen.
And even though I cannot make it better, I can make it less lonely.
I have learned the immense power of another hand holding tight to mine, of other eyes that moisten as they learn to accept the harsh truth and when life is beyond hard.
I have learned a compassion that only comes with walking in those shoes.
I have learned to appreciate life.
Yes, I will be a wonderful mother.