Let the games begin…


Here we go, y’all. Day one of my last DEIVF cycle is here.

After a day full of parsley tea to encourage things to get going, I got my period last night and therefore tonight will be the first delestrogen shot. It’s always funny how you have to call the RE to tell them you got your period. For some reason it feels like I’m posting it on social media, it’s such a random thing to call someone for – hey, I got my period!!! Yay for me!!! Tell your friends!!!

Anyhoo. In a journey that’s had many first, the last birth control pill has come and gone, that was the last time I have to make that kind of phone call. I picked up my last box of home pregnancy tests with butterflies, and made an assembly line out of my syringes, needles, alcohol wipes and bandaids for the plethora of intramuscular injections that will make my bum lumpy and sensitive and so fun to sit on by the time we’re at April.


Final Regimen

Above is everything for this final cycle. For those who are interested, here’s the rundown:

  • Synthroid 175mcg – thus far this dose has kept me slightly hyperthyroidic which my endocrinologist recommended so that when the estrogen hits my system I’ll be at a standard TSH level. We are monitoring it closely and I’m re-checking next week.
  • Pure Encapsulations Prenatal – I take this brand of prenatal twice daily, which has no folic acid in it. It’s been shown that folate is better than folic acid (there is a difference) and that if you have the MTHFR gene that can contribute to infertility, that you should avoid FA as it has the opposite effect. My ND moved me onto this prenatal as a precautionary measure as the MTHFR test is pretty spendy and this is one of those things that with or without the gene, it’s a good prenatal and you just take a folate supplement instead.
  • Thorne 5-MTHF – Folate once daily as per the above explanation.
  • Thorne D-5000 – Extra Vitamin D once daily in the IVF cycle has been shown to improve implantation rates.
  • Calcium/Magnesium/D – I eat very little dairy beyond butter inside foods, and so I take this supplement. Because calcium can interfere with thyroid, I take two in the afternoon after my Synthroid has been absorbed.
  • Fish Oil – Twice daily – Highly recommended in regular life and even more so for embryo health during IVF.
  • Vitamin E – My prenatal doesn’t have the RDA for E so I take this additional supplement once daily for its antioxidant qualities and overall embryo health.
  • Baby Aspirin – For blood flow and anti-inflammatory properties, once daily.
  • Prednisolone – For 5 days leading up to transfer, to help with immunology and those with history of miscarriage (so your body doesn’t consider the embryo a foreign object that must be expelled at all costs).
  • Bromelain – For 5 days leading up to transfer to encourage implantation, because I hate pineapple and therefore refuse to eat pineapple core so my Acu gave me this!
  • Delestrogen – Intramuscular injections in the bum once every 3 days. It’s considered the gold standard compared to pills, suppositories and patches.
  • Vicodin & Valium – For transfer day since my cervix gets manually dilated and this keeps me chill. Because of the excruciating pain of ERA #2, he’s going to give me a shot of demerol as well to ensure success and a mellow Aimee πŸ™‚
  • Progesterone – Intramuscular injections daily, with 6 instead of 5 doses before my transfer, as per the ERA biopsy results which showed I was pre-receptive on 5. May the force be with us, y’all.

And yes, that’s our new lucky pig in the background.

So here we go, folks. The weather is slowly warming, the ducks are growing like weeds, my back is STILL in a rough place but I have hope that this time next year, our lives will look very, very different.

“Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies.”Β 
~ Andy Dufresne, The Shawshank Redemption



24 thoughts on “Let the games begin…

    1. Basically it’s just three times a day that I take pills – thyroid pill is next to my bed so I take it before I even get out of bed, the next set is after breakfast, and the final set is in the afternoon. Everything that is not a daily pill is on my Google calendar on my phone so an alarm goes off which is awesome as I’d forget my head if it wasn’t screwed on πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Woohooo!!! Here you go!

    A few more progesterone shots and you’ll never have to do it again! The progesterone shots are 100% worse then needle through the vaginal wall to suck out the eggs. Too bad you don’t get some demerol when you take your progesterone in the ass. I love that stuff! Yay to moving forward! Yay to spring!

    This reminded me I need to be better about taking my supplements – the thyroid meds have made it more difficult to get them all down. :/


    1. Yeah mine is completely unreliable even getting off birth control so I tried to drink a cup of it (a few tablespoons of parsley each round, let it sit there for at least 10 minutes, and I encourage honey so it doesn’t taste like ass as much) every couple of hours. I think it’s the massive amount of vitamin C that does it but it’s helped me in the past as well. And of course that means I was running back and forth to the bathroom all day long. πŸ™‚


  2. It’s already here?! Wow, time goes by so fast. I love the image you attached to this post. Well played. Does progesterone in oil cause insomnia? Progesterone suppositories have caused insomnia in me; I wasn’t sure if PIO had the same side effect. My RE also prescribed a valium on transfer day. I felt so relaxed. It was so blissful. Holding you and your hubby in my heart.


    1. Oh yeah, my sleep gets totally disrupted on PIO, I think that’s pretty common. I don’t feel the delestrogen so much, maybe because I’m so used to the side effects, but when I start PIO in April that’ll be a wild ride for sure (not to mention the sore bum, as the Del shots are fast and way easier with less to go in the bum and a 25 gauge needle).

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’ve heard progesterone supplementation can cause disrupted sleep. When I take the pills and cream it doesn’t cause disrupted sleep. PIO and suppositories are right near then organs that need progesterone, as opposed to pills have to go through the liver and digestive system. I’m glad I’m not alone with the disrupted sleep. I read somewhere that someone was giving themselves their own PIO. Was that you? I’m sorry I read your post at 4am when I was having crazy insomnia. Do you ice before PIO injections? I’ve heard about the sore bums from the various PIO injections. My hubby goes out of town so it wasn’t an option for us. So del shots use a 25 guage needle, too, but less units? Those
        Menopur shots were painful because of the amount of liquid in the barrel. I forget the guage. When doe fertilization of DEs begin? I’m sure you will keep us posted. I will be following your journey.


        1. I have pretty much only ever done PIO shots and even though it’s direct, it still messes with my sleep because it’s mega hormones πŸ™‚

          I *NEVER* ice before injections – ALWAYS heat. Some do ice because of the needle but it’s way better to do heat because it allows the progesterone to melt faster and get less lumpy – think about it this way, it’s in oil, and if you put oil in the fridge, what does it do compared to if you put it in a warm saucepan? So I use a heating pad on my bum for 5 min then after my hubby injects it he rubs the injection site in a circular motion to help it disperse, then I use the heating pad for 5 minutes and make sure to walk around afterwards as well.

          No, I never give myself shots – always my husband. That’s his job as my partner and I am a firm believer that the partner should be doing the shots and be at all the appointments, no matter what. He takes the time off work just like I do for this.

          Yes, PIO daily shots in the arse will eventually give you a sore bum after a week or so. My husband circles the injection site and then we go to the other cheek the next day, circle that, and back and forth. In the beginning he can easily tell where he last did the shot, but by the time you’re in the TWW and you’ve had 9 or 10, it gets confusing and you want to avoid putting the needle in the exact same place, especially if it’s lumpy as it hurts like a motherfucker if he accidentally pokes an old spot! πŸ™‚ It got really tough when I got pregnant last summer (miscarried @ 9 weeks) as you continue the shots for the first trimester, and we were having a hard time finding spots…so doc said if we get and stay pregnant this time we can move to suppositories if absolutely needed after the 2nd ultrasound.

          We use 25 for delestrogen because the dose is so much smaller than PIO and I swear it’s barely felt. We use 22 gauge needles for PIO because it’s a much bigger dose and while 25 technically works, it takes like a minute to go in the bum and I can’t stand still that long (best way to get the shot for me is to slightly lean on the kitchen counter, put all my weight on the side not getting the shot so it eases right in. We tried it lying down in the past and it’s too awkward). So I’m not a fan of 22 gauge but after accidentally using an 18 gauge ? I can deal πŸ™‚

          With donor egg IVF, during the fresh cycle which we did in 2015, we were aligned with the donor. So basically it’s the same as a regular IVF cycle but the donor goes through the egg retrieval instead of me, and so my meds at that time (Lupron, Del, PIO) were timed to match her cycle and retrieval. We did a fresh transfer and all the rest were frozen, so we’re using the last two “A” embryos for this 6th and final attempt. My timeline is here if you want to see the whole story: https://theecofeminist.com/2016/01/08/our-infertility-timeline/.

          thanks for the questions & support!

          Liked by 1 person

        2. It’s interesting how hormones affect people. Most people are sleepy when taking progesterone. A few of us, like us, have sleep distruptions. Heating the area before PIO injections totally makes sense for the reasons you cite above. Thanks for the injection tips such as circular rubbing motions and leaning on kitchen counter. Thanks for explaining this to me. So the embryos are in ice. I thought maybe you were doing a fresh transfer. Sorry about the miscarriage 😦 I will check out your timeline. Hugs and thinking of you and hubby as cycle 6 is underway.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. I always find it weird phoning my clinic to tell them my period has arrived too! Sounds like all the supplements you are taking should help your body to be totally ready for this transfer. I am sending you so many positive vibes right now and feeling really hopeful for you!

    Liked by 1 person

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