Cycle Day 1

I had a dream last night that I gave birth. I was so happy, and wondering when we could start trying for number four (I know – crazy – but it was a dream). In my dream I went to the toilet and felt the placenta suddenly fall away from me, and I was shocked that the hospital had sent me home without checking it was out.

When I woke up, my period had started and the blood had soaked through my knickers and onto the sheets.

Funny isn’t it? Even when it doesn’t feel like it, I think our minds are connected with what our bodies are doing.

Well, it’s been a long month. 33 days to be exact.

My ovulation was a few days out following the five day juice fast we did, so that explains why I’ve deviated from my usual 28 days.

So.

Back in the ring this month, and this is the month I am going to conceive our third child. Yep – it’s definitely going to be this month. There is no alternative. Ovulation is due on 3rd March.

Just in case, however, things don’t go according to plan (because you should always have a plan B), we have also made appointments for our pre-IVF testing, which we’ll do this cycle, so everything is ready to go if for some reason I don’t get pregnant.

So, three things going on at the moment:

1) Ongoing diet changes

The juice fast has been amazing in helping me stay on the straight and narrow. I haven’t touched any sugar, diary or caffeine since I did it (except for some maple syrup on pancake day), and now, almost four weeks on, I really am feeling the benefit. My energy is good, I’m sleeping really well, and my skin has finally, finally cleared up. I reintroduced meat after about two weeks and had zero adverse affects, so I’m eating that occasionally too. We’re cooking pretty much everything we eat from scratch and I’m staying away from processed foods, tinned foods (BPA) and anything that comes under the umbrella of “crap carbs”.

I’m taking B12 (methylcobalamin), ubiquinol (best form of CoQ10), a prenatal vitamin and I am still on a very low dose of DHEA.

I have had almost ZERO physical symptoms with this cycle. No backache in the weeks after ovulation, no tenderness in my boobs at all, no bloating, no breakouts, and barely any ovulation pain. I did feel a bit tearful just after ovulation, which I think is a result of both hormones (oestrogen and progesterone) being on the low side – it’s the same every month. But otherwise, this has been a very quiet and restful month, and I think that (hopefully) means that my hormone levels are nice and steady, and everything is working as it should be.

I’ve been listening to a Glenn Harold relaxation CD (“Complete Relaxation”), every night and he is AMAZING. I’ve tried several relaxation tapes, and most of them are pretty good, but there is something about this one that just does it for me. I fall asleep listening to it every single night without fail, no matter what has happened in the day. Partly, I think, my diet means I am sleeping better so it’s easier to drop off, but I am a terrible over-analyser and this tape basically stops me from running over conversations and analysing them to death every night. In fact, in the last few weeks there have been three nights where I have actually slept though the night from around 10pm to 7am without waking up. For those of you who sleep well, this is probably no big deal, but I have barely slept through the night in 5 and a half years, so for me it is huge.

What else… oh yeah – I dug out my fitbit and have been trying to meet 10,000 steps each day. I want to make sure I am getting adequate blood flow to my ovaries and uterus so I can build a decent lining. Some days I do, some I don’t, but it’s making me more aware of movement. Lots and lots of walking is my plan for the next two weeks – the more the better.

Incidentally, if anyone uses a fitbit and wants to connect with me, my profile is here:

2. IVF

We’re booked in for a sperm analysis next Tuesday, and then infection screening and a follow up consultation the Tuesday after. They will also test my AMH, which I’ve never had done, so that will be interesting. After that it *should* be a case of letting them know when my period arrives – probably by 18th March – and we’ll be good to go (assuming the cyst has gone on my left ovary).

I’ll post about the IVF choice separately, and our reasoning, but we’re opting for straightforward, vanilla IVF. No ICSI, no PGD. Our clinic transfers on day 5.

I am actually looking at IVF as our exit plan. I don’t really think that it’s going to give us a better chance than we’ve already had, but we need to try this because if we don’t I will always wonder ‘what if’.

3. Failure

Because, of course, failure is an option.

I have to be realistic at this stage, and I think given how much effort DH have put into changing our lifestyles over the last year or two, we can find some kind of peace in knowing that we really DID do everything we could. It’s not feasible for us to dedicate our lives to “perfect” health, but we’ve given it a really good shot.

I don’t want to carry on living in fear of eating the wrong thing. Or wondering if I’m causing a miscarriage via an obscure sub-clinical vitamin deficiency, or a low grade immune disorder. I want to be me, without all this obsessing and crying. Each time I miscarry, I head back into TTC with a vengeance, but I have to say that my enthusiasm tails off quicker each time.

If I can’t get pregnant now, or next cycle with IVF, given everything I have done, and how much I have read and researched, and how many changes I have made to the way we all live, if my body still will not cooperate, then I think I can possibly begin to believe that I really am too old to be having children. Not that 40 is too old, but that for me, at 40, my body doesn’t want to go through the process any more. That my lifestyle choices, or maybe my genetics, have potentially shortened my reproductive lifespan and I need to accept that I am who am.

Self-acceptance is never easy, and it is even harder in the face of failure, but I know that’s where peace lies. So in the midst of all this, I am thinking about that too.

And I am hoping that I can accept what happens with grace.

Although, obviously, I reserve the right to go out kicking, screaming and biting while they put a straightjacket on me and throw me into the back of a hospital van.

13 thoughts on “Cycle Day 1

  1. That last line was brilliant. I hope everything goes well for you. The changes you’ve made in your diet are impressive. I’m glad you’re feeling the benefits from it already. For me, sugar is evil- I notice that my immune system crashes after I have it, and that my skin breaks out as a by product of the inflammation.

    • Thank you. Yep – sugar is most definitely evil. I wish I’d learnt that earlier. It’s taken me a long time to break the habit – and I’ll probably always be in recovery to some extent because it is so addictive once you start eating the damn stuff. Bad all round. I really notice how it affects my mood when I eat it now, which is in itself a good reason for me to stay away.

  2. Praying this cycle really goes well for you, Rose. I know how much you have wanted this! Love and prayers. I hope you find peace in knowing that you’ve explored every single option! xoxo Hugs!

  3. I so hope that you do not have to face the prospect of failure, no-one should ever have to give up their dream.
    But, I completely agree with you that you need to know that you tried and did everything possible. That’s the exact approach we took, and I firmly believe it is the best way to have no regrets in the long run.

    • That’s what we want. No regrets. I don’t want to fight forever, but I do want to know we fought as hard as we could for what we wanted.

  4. I hope this cycle works out for you! The life changes you’ve made are amazing, so proud of you for that! I hope that, whatever happens, you will be able to find peace and happiness.

  5. Massive heaps of good luck, good juju and good vibes being sent your way (and this time they will surely arrive, as I’m just a stone’s throw from you in Manchester!) 🙂 xoxo

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