Friday, January 25, 2013


Greetings, ladies o the interwebs!

Okay, here's the thing.  I have been in a bit of a skunky funk as of late, hence the radio silence.   I have decided to swim in it until my fingers get all pruney because I find that if you force yourself to ignore a wee bit o depression it tends to hang out a little longer and beg with increasing patheticness for your attention (it has a low self esteem, after all, that depression).  Sort of like if you're driving in snow and your car decides to skid - you're supposed to just take your hands off the steering wheel and let it slide because if you went with your intuition and fought it too hard you're much more likely to end up mangled.  So there we have it.  I'm sure it will get bored with me soon and move on to some other lady who will play hard to get.

I also did something tragically old lady to my right knee, so this week I've been additionally holed up in a knee brace.  No idea what I did, I have bad knees to begin with so I'm used to just having a few off days with them, but one of them has decided to go above and beyond as of late so I ended up in urgent care on Monday.  Nothing broken in the xrays, had to get an MRI last night.

It is official, apart from having my anonymous torso and/or fanny used as background in one of those local news stories on America's problem with obesity, waiting rooms are at the top of my ridiculous-nightmare list.

I had an appointment at 5:45, they called at 5 to let me know they were running a half hour behind, could I show up at 6 for a 6:15 appointment.  Fine.

I drive my gimp self there, pull into a huge medical center with a pay ticket.  It is abandoned - no one is there, google maps has betrayed me.  It looks like every dark parking lot in every lifetime movie involving rape, and I am literally quivering as I get out of the car to verify this is the wrong building.  Thank the heavens it doesn't make me pay to get out, so I pull into the next large medical building (google maps should just be a little off, after all).  Again, a paid parking lot and now I am mysteriously at a ghetto fabulous hospital diving off the side of the road to get away from ambulances.  I call the place where I have an appointment, they basically say 'oh no, silly, we are located in a tiny shack behind the CVS across the street where people go to fill their prescriptions for bloodlust and murder'.

I charm the lady manning this pay booth into letting me out, finally arrive at the right shack.

The place wreaks of cat litter boxes long abandoned and the cheapest dollar-store cleaning solutions.  I spend my evening trying not to itch.  The woman informs me that my appointment will start 30-40 minutes from now.

There is one woman in the waiting room aside from me, and she is either sleeping or dead.  This is never a good sign, and I spent my hour in the waiting room occasionally checking to see if she's breathing because I don't want to be that blurred out asshole on the news in the waiting room with some seriously ill person who has died without the medical personnel realizing it.

Meanwhile, the medical personnel is eating their dinner and discussing cats (could this be where the litter box smell is coming from?)  One sad woman spends 15 minutes going through the many pictures on her phone, and explaining the many subtle layers to the psychology of each of her kitties.  They are the loudest chewers on the planet - the only sound apart from meowing-in-my-head is chewing, like an angry army of vaginas marching through mud.

I am literally in the middle of the ghetto, waiting for some guy to take me behind a paisley curtain and ask me to disrobe.  I realize I may not be in a medical office at all but rather some dude's basement.

15 minutes before my appointment the chewing stops and cat lady decides to put on the tv, on a marathon of two and a half men.  It occurs to me maybe I'm not in some dude's basement but I'm in fact in hell.

They finally do my loud ass MRI, and the one poor bastard actually working there is the one poor bastard operating the one poor MRI machine.  Note:  You cannot call yourself an imaging center, you are more of an image center.

Today is the day I'm to get back up on my diet horse and get this TTC thing back on track, as my depression and I have gained approximately 4,000 lbs.  Suffice it to say this has not put me in the mood for it.

In better news, Bubba failed his super-duper fancy shmancy sperm test in Massachusetts. I am seriously delighted by this.

As a recap, we've been trying 3 years, had our first IVF in June with poor fertilization (and yes we had ICSI) - 1 out of 10 fertilized, ended in a chemical pregnancy.  Could've been a fluke, sure.

Dr. Kickass was dumbfounded and took it personally.  He had another Doctor test for DNA fragmentation, gratis, and we passed.  He happened to be aware of a study - a study - going on in Mass.  I repeat, not common knowledge or a common practice, a fucking study.  Basically, some men are missing a protein in their sperm that tells the egg that it's there and to start doing it's thing. Their sperm samples will look amazing (Bub's looks like he could impregnate a village), and you would be classified as 'unexplained' because everybody looks fancy.  Unless of course, you get all the way to IVF and have some fishy fertilization issues, and your Doc is aware of this study.

So Dr. Kickass pulled some strings, and got Bub into the study.  So Christmas day Bub flew up to Mass from where we were visiting in DC, made a cup his bitch on the morning of the 26th, drove back to MD in the snow. We were told it would be 3 weeks to get the results.

So yesterday Dr. K called, and said that they had the results - Bub is missing the protein.  So when we do IVF again (April?  May?  Girlfriend's gotta get her shit together) we will have fancy shmancy IVF where they not only do ICSI, but put the protein into the dishes themselves to get the party started.

I am tickled by this news... Reason being, at least there's an explanation for what's going on. And it is somewhat liberating way down the line here to know 'oh you were never going to get pregnant with Clomid, or IUI, or your first IVF.. you were always going to end up here.  And you're lucky because your Doctor knew to test for this thing that most people aren't even aware of".

So I'm stoked.  We'll have a summit on where the hell we go from here, but we have someplace to go, is my point.

Bub asked when he was in Mass how many people have this protein deficiency and they said, basically that they had no idea - it could be a lot a lot a lot.

So I am super excited and grateful... On the other hand, how many women who have gotten A++'s on all their tests and their husbands tests, have this problem and will never know or get tested for it? Because you would literally never know that this was going on unless you got to IVF and had poor fertilization, and then your Doctor could just be dumbfounded as opposed to suggesting testing for this.  I mean, this is at best a tiny chunk and at worst a huge chunk of the explanation for the 'unexplained infertility'.

So anyhoo - putting this out into the ether so if someone has 'poor fertilization' they can look this up and shoot me a message so we can chitter chatter.

Never been so happy to flunk a test.


  1. That MRI experience sounds HORRIFYING. I hate waiting rooms and I really hate loud chewers.

    While I'm never happy someone has a problem with their swimmers, I am happy that you guys have some answers and it's not just a "Let's try again and see" sorta thing.

    If I didn't live on the other side of the country I'd offer to help your diet by eating all your toast. Alas, I'm in KY and shipping toast is gross.

    Cheers to repairable sperm and hopefully a lifting funk!

  2. Waiting rooms like you described give me the urge to take a long, scalding shower in which I scrub my skin raw in hopes of getting rid of any potential diseases I may have picked up. *Shudders.* I can't stand loud chewers, that and people who talk with their mouth full.

    I'm happy you have some answers and hope your next IVF leads to a take home baby.

  3. So happy for you. It is so nice to know exactly what you can change on your next cycle. So excited to cheer you on!!! P.S. write more!! I looooooooooooove your posts!!!!!

  4. Boooo and hissss to depression and bum knees. I hope you start to feel better soon, on both fronts.

    But...hooray for answers! I can't wait for you guys to the party started this spring/summer. :)

  5. Wow, that is crazy talk that all those pieces fell into place and you found the missing protein. So crazy. I hope this is it and the next time is the one!

  6. Oh my days, your MRI sounded terrifying, I think I would have bottled it and gone home!

    Sorry to hear you've not been feeling to fantastic, feeling shitty and then having a dodgy knee, seems you got hit with the shit stick. Hope you're soon feeling much better :)

    Also, woohoo for the protein "issues" I never stop being amazed at just how amazing science is! Here's to fantastic fertilsation next time!

  7. Oh Hun so sorry about the MRI...ekkk I hate those places. I had to have on done due to vertigo issues....freaky deaky shit!!!

    Sorry you've been in slump. It's okay be there, just don't stay there. Oh and the weight gain. I don't know any infertile that did big gain weight with of the pressure that is put on us.

    I'm so psyched for you!!! Knowing that there is something wrong is half the battle. Once we knew all that was wrong with me...boom with child!!! I'm so frigging excited for you to take this next journey.. You are going to be one kick ass mom!!

  8. I meant that did not gain wieght....iPads suck sometimes!!!

  9. Wow, that waiting room experience sounds horrifying. Luckily you survived it!
    Absolutely fascinated by this protein issue because I'm wondering if it was our problem too. Our RE told me after I had my major break-down on the phone to him after hearing our 2/12 fert report that next time they would do "aggressive ICSI"...I'm not sure what that is (I think he told me but I was in no state to understand scientific jargon at that point) but maybe it has to do with the protein. So interesting. Glad that you were able to figure this out...and it kinda is liberating to realize there was NOTHING we could have done to get pregnant "naturally" was this way or no way. Wish I could have learned that a bit sooner. Best of luck as you prepare to get this party started again!

  10. Yikes! I think I would have took one look at that medical center and run for the hills. You are one brave chick! Btw, did you know that the whole thing with being sensitive to the sounds people make (like chewing, smacking lips, etc) is called misophonia and is an actual neurological issue? I have been super sensitive to repetative sounds and in particular the chewing noises my whole life and I just found out about misophonia this past year. :) Just a whole 'nother level of crazy to add to the ol' resume.

    So very glad that you guys finally have a dx! That is such a huge step on the journey. Hoping that your doc has an awesome plan to make this next go round work!

  11. That's so great you have an answer. And it's fixable. That's the best part. Sometimes you just need the pure dumb luck of being with the right doctor. I am curious now how many cases of "unexplained infertility" could be solved with this.

    I feel you on the depression. I started crying for absolutely no reason today while my lunch was heating up in the microwave. Infertility is fun!!

  12. So glad for figuring out what is wrong and how to fix it! Great news!

  13. Whoa. And I thought India was scary at times. :-)

  14. I'm so sorry about the depression and the knee thing. It's that time of year...of course most folks I know injuring themselves are slipping on ice...I hope both things get better soon.

    I have certainly missed your posts. They help with my "depression." Yeah, I'm putting it all on you. I'm depressed without my daily Stork fix....In all seriousness though, I have missed you lots...and you never fail to put a smile on my face...Needed that today after a crappy past few days. So thanks!

    YAY! so exciting that you have news, an answer, something that might possibly be fixable. Failing a test isn't usually a good thing, but in this instance it's celebration worthy. I'm so excited for you to go back to your doctor. I'm hoping for good news and new ideas so we can get you knocked up!!!


  15. I caught the depression bug here too recently. Sucks. But, hooray for missing proteins!

  16. Oh my gosh, you have answers finally!! I'm so glad! This is going to work!! I totally understand that funk. That is exactly how I was when my 2nd IVF ended in a chemical and we were stuck for awhile. I gained weight, too - kind of a lot. Things are going to get better though. I'm looking forward to all the good things to come for you this year!!! Thinking of you xoxoxo

  17. Very exciting that you have an answer on the sperm! Adding the protein sounds easy enough! Must feel great to have a solution! Yey!

  18. Out of all of that drama (OMG ewww), I am so glad to read that last portion: you have an answer! Yay! That is great news!

  19. This is exciting about the protein, I hope it is the answer to what's going on with you guys. It seems to be a very easy thing to fix. Yay for doctors trying to find answers and open to knew research. There is so much unknowns in this IF world still. Fingers crossed this is it.

  20. Congratulations on getting an answer and something concrete to do.

    And while I don't love that you hurt your knee, how much do I love the phrase: "tragically old lady to my right knee."

  21. Very interesting study. Hope your knee feels better soon.

  22. I realize that MRI story was probably SO not funny at the time, but it made me laugh. :) And coming from a fellow "unexplained infertile" this is a very interesting study. Thanks for sharing it.

  23. OMG this is amazing/horrifying/fascinating/so frickin' exciting!! I agree - if you guys were ever going to fail a test, THIS would be the test. Seriously, I would almost suggest buying some baby clothes now because it seems pretty much guaranteed that you will be knocked up by May. AAAAHHH!! And thanks for sharing the wisdom about this missing protein - I will definitely be keeping this in mind if we have poor fertilization. In fact, I'm tempted to let my RE know about this anyway, just in case it could help other couples...

  24. I've never heard of this! So interesting! I want to share this with jay at the TWO WEEK WAIT because seriously this was her scenario and they've said it wa her eggs! Oh and good luck on the next round!!

  25. Sorry about the bum leg, but I'm very excited for your news! Now you have a plan to focus on!

  26. Wow. This is so interesting. You've given those of us in the unexplained category something else to consider. There has to be a reason (or, probably, an army of reasons) for infertility of the currently unexplained variety. We've just got to wait for science to figure them all out. And holy shit. You may have found yours. I bet you're through the roof (or at least the second floor) with hope and optimism.

  27. Wow...I have never heard of this. I emailed my doctor right away. This sounds so much like us. Thanks for sharing.

  28. I'm so glad you have some answers - hopefully your next IVF will work beautifully! Having a reason rather than IF being "unexplained" is definitely a good start! Hope your knee is better soon, too :)

  29. I'm so glad - not that this issue exists, but that you found out about it and have a solution for it. Very cool.

    Thinking of you as you work your way out of your skunky funk.

  30. God that waiting room sounds like hell indeed! So sorry about the depression and your knee. I hope that both things are looking up. I hate it when that cloud descends and wraps you up in a big bear hug of shit. Instead have a nice girly British hug from across the pond!
    Oh and great news that you may have an answer! Fingers crossed that this solves things. Any idea on when you will start round 2?

  31. Are they still enrolling for the sperm protein study? We live in nearby RI. We're technically unexplained. DH has great overall #s but is borderline on morph & mot. We have crap fert even with ICSI. IVF #1: 5 ret, 2 mat, 1 fert. IVF #2: 10 ret, 8 mat, 4 fert (trans'd 2 & 1 frozen). IVF #3: 7 ret, 5 mat & 2 fert (1 arrested on morning of transfer).

    1. Message me! I don't know if it's an open enrollment sort of thing, I'm pretty sure it's ongoing.. But message me I'll give you the dets to look into! Maybe they're doing it somewhere else too..

  32. So glad that you have an answer, and so glad that you're sharing it with the ether. Sorry about the wallow-y-ness; sometimes things just suck, but I'm sorry that it's happening that way for you.

  33. You know, I am constantly amazed at scientific discoveries. This protein business is amazing. I'm glad that your RE was on top of things and got your husband in to the test. Amazing! Also, I have a bum knee that also needs surgery. Suck! I hope you can get yours resolved before you begin your next cycle!

  34. Dang! In a weird convoluted way that is great news!

  35. i am soOOOOOO glad that you finally got an answer! AMEN SISTER!!!

    I am also glad that you escaped from the lil office of horrors alright

    I FULLY understand what you are talking about over here! (in regards to the first part of your post. Feeling skunky funky)

  36. Storkio, Storkio, where for art thou Storkio? i miss you.

  37. Well, I just found your blog and I'm LOVING it. You are an exceptional writer. I can't wait to read more! This story had me actually laughing out loud.

  38. Haha I'm glad you were able to find out, its funny how flunking a test can at least give you the peace of mind knowing what's going on. I work at an egg bank and we deal with these issues day in and day out, I'm just glad the technology's getting better and better day by day for people like you.