Dec 30, 2010

The goods

What did it take to get a positive?

Many thanks to Mandy for the 5 Gonal F pens!!!

Dec 28, 2010


Since Jo dedicated a post asking for details and congratulating us and many of you asked for details, I figured I best jot them down now.   Dr Shivani called at 4am, and I was DEEP in a Nyquil sleep.  Getting woken up mid nigh time buzz is tough as I felt disoriented all day, and sadly am still quite sick.  Anyway, Dr Shivani calls and goes right into it with huge excitement in her voice "Kerrie, I am calling with the best Christmas present EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"  I started screaming and our conversation was full of excitement on both ends.   Obviously Mark awoke instantly and knew what was happening, especially with all the screaming and thank you's and OMG!!!!  It sure is wonderful to get this call as opposed to the "other" that we normally have received.   We are very lucky to announce that one surrogate is pregnant and our beta is 150, a good solid starting number.  Our first scan will be Jan. 3rd for which I imagine will look at the fetal pole and yolk sac etc.   Its VERY early stages as you know, but we are so delighted to FINALLY get a positive.  Getting back to sleep was a challenge after that news.  We had some nice tea that we brought home from Delhi (hard to justify a glass of wine at 5 am), And then I puked.  Yes, all the excitement caused me to upchuck!  Maybe sympathetic morning sickness, but probably just the excitement.   Later in the morning we received scanned copies of the lab work and we felt sad for surro 2 and her negative.  She is such a lovely gal and we really hope she gets another chance soon.  We shared our news yesterday as well...we know we should wait til all is good and clear, but we just couldn't wait.   With all our negatives, some friends and family are feeling that we are being scammed, even though we have reassured them we are not.   We had many phone calls yesterday, and a new mom of twins in Europe called to congratulate us and she was giddy!  Every time she giggled on the phone, the twin boy would laugh along with her...just melted my heart!!  Thank you so much for all the emails and all he blog comments!  I am thinking collectively we have enough prayers and good wishes to keep this pregnancy going til at least 36 weeks! Thank you thank you! 
Huge thanks to Devender at the Phoenix lab and Dr Shivani for letting us know what a positive feels like! For now we are grateful for this and will take it one step at a time. 
Based on the beta I am assuming a singleton, and one friend who is in Delhi now loving the birth of her baby girl emailed us to say that their beta was 149.6 so I am pretty sure we have one good baby there.
Anita/Dreaming will be flying off to Mumbai soon for baby birth and we had such a good chat last night - my excitement of a positive and hers of finally getting to go for baby pick up!  All the best for safe travels and birth!!!!
And lastly for those who have received negatives....we are the poster children for negatives and rocky roads (as I write this I imagine the poster Mike and Mike could make lol).   This was transfer number 5&6 for us, yes, number 5&6!!  We never gave up on the process or our embryos.  Please keep plugging away, its not easy emotionally or financially, but persistence is worth it.

Our update on the is live, here is the link

Dec 27, 2010



Dec 23, 2010

Can you imagine this happening?

In the midst of our TWW and we get word of this article and its small follow up article a few days later...

There is always a fear that at baby pick up your dna test will not match so the horror of this story is too close to home.   I just cannot imagine having twins and only one child has a dna link.  The mix up in the lab could have happened just as easily at home and sadly our government is not offering any help to this couple and they have been stranded for five years.

ps...less than 4 days left in our tww!!

Dec 21, 2010

6 Days down

We are 6 days into our two week wait!  Time has gone very quickly as we have had many distractions (like flying home, jet lag, turning 40, going back to work, trying to sleep and eat, getting a head cold and prepping for Christmas).   Saturday Mark had the family come over for birthday cake which was nice and Sunday I was able to have a glass of wine!  I had to wait until Sunday so I was finished my antibiotics.  Sadly the wine wasn't really enjoyed as I was brewing a heck of a head cold.  I drank 3/4's of it and had to lay in bed to rest.   I went to my naturopath on Monday for an IV of fluids, vitamins and homeopathic injectables so hopefully by end of day today I will be on the mend. We have about 5 days, 7 hours and 59 minutes til our tww ends.  Fortunately it is a short work week but a busy one, then we do the European Christmas Eve, eat fish and break bread.  Christmas day will be at our house (I was voluntold) and I will be cooking the whole traditional bird and fixings. 
On the good luck charm side of the tww, we have an ancient Hawaiian fertility brooch from Gen and Winston, and gold necklace from Ursula,  an inspiration stone of Hope from Rebecca, a chicken from Lisa and two charms for my charm bracelet from my sister Christine (one is a four leaf clover and the other is an elephant).  Very thoughtful loaners and gifts from our friends and family!!! We are loaded up with hope, faith and prayers - now lets just see how it all plays out!  We have 6 good chances this time, yes, six...yikes!
Enjoy the Holiday season, whatever that may mean to you!  And in tradition at our house, we will watch Bad Santa and enjoy that chubby blonde kid who eats sandwiches and is oblivious that his Santa is a drunk thief!!!

Dec 16, 2010

Last Day in Delhi

It is hard to believe that time went so quickly.  Our last day was busy as usual.   We had a lazy morning then headed to Select City Mall.  We checked out the mall which was very western in style and a bit too pricey for us.  The only thing we bought was some whisky!  We headed to Delhi Haat after the mall.  Delhi Haat is a government run handicrafts shop.  Here you can get wood crafts, saris, paschmenas, marble carvings etc.  We did a quick last minute shop and got out of there.  Even though the prices are fixed by the government and there is no haggling, it is exhausting to shop there as the shop keepers start unwrapping EVERYTHING in the store for us to feel and hopefully buy.  We knew exactly what we came for so it was not too bad, but trying to get away from all the men yelling "madam, look at this" really grates on the nerves.  We were with driver Sanjay and he later dropped us off at Phoenix where we met up with Devender in the lab and Dr Shivani.  We decided to have Mark leave a "sample" just incase things do not work out this time.  Dr S said she would give us our final embryo detail later that night after the transfer.  Devender got Mark all set up for sample time and Dr S handed me my last injection of the trip - a low dose heparin to prevent blood clots on the long trip home.  Mark managed his sample and we said our goodbyes to the team and headed back to the hotel.

Dr Shivani arranged to have some extra pain meds delivered to the hotel for me and they arrived before 7pm which was great so we could lay down a bit before the long travel home. 
Around 11pm we received an email from Dr Shivani that our transfers went smooth and that we had six good embryos.   That was a releif and now hopefully at least one of them settles in for the long haul.  Just before midnight Rahul pulled up out front and we made our way downstairs with our luggage.  Here we are with the famed Rahul
Oh and also my security guard boyfriend :
We landed home today to many lovely emails of best wishes and happy birthday.  I got to enjoy an additional 10.5 hours of my birthday..probably the one and only time I will ever get to say that!
Travel home was flawless, just tiring.   Tomorrow I am back to work and Mark returns on Monday.  We are officially in our TWW!!!

Dec 14, 2010

Tuesday recap

Tuesday I awoke feeling surprisingly well.  I have limited pain and swelling, kudos to Dr Shivani!!!  Since I was feeling good we decided to head out for a bit.  We headed to M Block market and I bought some Himalayan skin care products (at 30 rupees who can resist!).  We decided to cave and try MacDonald's, which we never eat at home.  There is one close to the hotel so we made our way over and got take out.  It was different than at home. 
Shortly after Kim came over with her daughter and we headed to the roof top patio for tea and oreos.  Kims daughter brought the oreo cookies so we all indulged a bit.   We had a great visit, swapped stories and really enjoyed the afternoon together.
As Kim was leaving my friend Nilesh called to see if we could do dinner.  A couple hours after Kim and her daughter left we finally met Nilesh.  I worked with Nilesh for almost two years in Toronto and we have kept in touch since.  We ended up going to the South Extension to Moti Mahal and had a great Indian spread (too much food, but oh so tasty!)

Nilesh had a driver so getting around was easy.  We headed back to our hotel around 10:30 and said our goodbyes.

Oh and finally, we ended up with 8 eggs.  We will know fert results today ad it is TRANSFER day!!!!  We are going to Phoenix later for Mark to leave a sample for the future should we not get pregnant this time.  We will not be freezing anything as we have a negative frozen factor and Dr Shivani will not play that game...which makes us SO  SO  SO happy!!  We will use up whatever embryos we have and hope and pray.  It only takes on (two would be nice)

Dec 13, 2010

Retrieval Day

We spent the late morning doing a little shopping with taxi driver \PK Raju, a random driver who picked us up and drove us around for 100 rupees.  He took us to Delhi Haat for scarves and saris and handicrafts, and then to a small store to buy some snacks.  Shortly after we returned from shopping, Sanjay showed up to take us on our way for retrieval.  Our first stop was the SCI office to pick up copies of our contracts, and we were fortunate to see our younger surrogate, glowing, smiling and happy to see us.
After the short stop at SCI we headed to Phoenix.  Sanjay (our driver) was super early so we decided to hit the bank machine to kill a few minutes.  We walked over to Phoenix and met up with Dr Rekha to get admitted.  On route in the hospital I asked Dr Rekha if we could see  the nursery.  She took us there and we got to see the twins that were born last week.  So little and looking great!  I then got admitted into room 22 and had the typical pre-op blood pressure, weigh in and pulse check.  I got changed into my gown which was no more attractive than at home.
At about 4:15 the nurse/sister came and gathered me for the big show.  Marky and I had a quick snuggle and wished each other bestest of luck and I headed to the basement for my procedure.  Dr Shivani greeted me and escorted me into the operating theatre.  She got me settled and told me I would just have to wait a few minutes for the anaesthetist.  The nurses were in and out getting every thing ready and then the anaesthetist came in, set my IV up and started injecting antibiotics, pain killers etc into my line,   Dr Shivani entered and comforted me for a minute then the good stuff was flowing into my IV.  Withing seconds, I was out and next thing I knew I was being asked to transfer from the operating gurney to the bed in my room and Mark was right there. 

I shifted to the bed and dozed in and out for a bit then I had to pee.  The nurses called Dr Shivani and she said I had to use a bed pan...YIKES!  I pleaded with the nurses that I was ok and could use the toilet and eventually they caved.  I am fortunate that I typically wake up very well after surgery and do not get nauseous or dizzy.  I asked Mark about his "samples" and he was lucky that he got to do it in the washroom in the hospital room.   A short time later the nurses asked if we wanted tea and biscuits and we placed our order. 

We finished our snack and paid for it (50 rupees) and then I asked the nurses about my take home meds.  They said "just go to the pharmacy to collect them" and we kinda asked them to help us out, or maybe we could pick up at the hospital pharmacy the next day.  The nurses were so great ~ they called a local pharmacy and had them delivered.  It took all of 10 minutes and the cost was 460 rupees for 5 days of antibiotics, 5 days of probiotics and 15 pain pills.  Pretty sweet deal!  After Mark paid the pharmacy delivery boy we were set to go.  Vinod our evening driver was outside waiting for us and at 7:20 we left the hospital.  I was in minimal pain and felt pretty good.  The normal 5 minute drive to the hotel took about 20 minutes due to rush hour.  Vinod delivered us safely and we came back to order some soup and rest.  All in all it was an easy process.  Things went smoothly.  Today we are waiting on results of fertilization, so hopefully this will come soon. 
Later today we will have a visit from Kim and her daughter who are here for baby pick up.  We are really looking forward to this visit and apparently Kims daughter has made me a get well drawing ...awwwe.
Our post is up as well, this time the drama begins.....

Dec 12, 2010

Sunday Wrap Up

Busy busy day!  We arranged to have a car for half a day and do some site seeing.  We went to all the tourist traps...almost all as I got tired after 4 hours (lugging around all these follicles is hard work).  We started out at Lotus Temple
Then we headed to Humayun;s Tomb where we met some people:

And of course, I made some boy friends who swarmed me with great excitement until their teacher gave them the business and they returned back into a straight line.  This was alot of fun as you can see by my face!

We are far from good tourist. The monuments are truely amazing, and knowing that they are so old is cool indeed, but thats about enough for us.    We snapped some pics and headed on...
We also hit India Gate and the Presidents House, but those pics are on another SD card and I am too lazy to get it.    We came back to the hotel ordered some food and sat up on the roof top enjoying the sun.  Shortly after I laid down and slept for a few hours.  Its now 9pm and we are just waiting on our Pizza Hut delivery. 

Dec 11, 2010

Saturday Wrap Up

Saturday was a very good day here in Delhi.  We had a late breakfast then decided I would show Mark where Phoenix is.  We chose to walk it and enjoy stretching our legs.  Any one who has been to India knows that walking it is not like walking at home.  You walk on the street with the bikes, motorcycles, rickshaws, cars  and people.  We are about 1km from the hospital and enjoyed the hike over.  The road was pretty clear being Saturday but the horns were busy never the less.  We continued on past Phoenix on towards M Block Market which was about another kilometer.  We walked the market and went to the Coffee Bean to relax a bit.  Silly us, we both ordered iced tea, and as we drank it we pondered the fact that this was probably  tap water we wait, for, Delhi Belly!  I have enjoyed my Delhi Belly a few times, but over all it has not been too bad.  We grabbed a rickshaw back to the hotel and negotiated 30 rupees to do so (we were more than likely hosed by the driver but so be it).  We had about 2 hours before we had to be at Phoenix so we chilled in the room a bit.  Later we grabbed a rickshaw , well after a few turned us away...not sure why, we have money!!  We booted over to Phoenix and it was a zoo in there.  This was the busiest I had seen it yet.  We had to wait a while for the ultrasound availability.  Finally, as Dr Shivani inserted the wand I could see my ovaries kissing..they are large and very close to each other.    This is good, all has gone well with my 10 days of Gonal F and one day of HMG. Speaking of HMG, I gave myself this shot before heading to the airport and it hurt like a bugger.  It is supposed to be administered intra-muscular and I opted to do sub-q.  I am still feeling this bastard of a shot today, like a ball of cement  in my belly.    After the ultrasound Dr Shivani arranged for us to be picked up around 5:15 pm to come to her office.    As we left Phoenix we flagged down a rickshaw and headed back to the hotel.  This driver wanted 50 rupees but Mark talked him down to 30.    I had made plans with Dr Shivani to do my last HMG shot at her office, intra-musclar, administered by Dr S herself.    Our car arrived on time and we made our way over to the office.  We met with Dr S and then headed into another room to meet with the lawyer who went through the contracts with us.  We initialled  all the pages and signed where required on both contracts.    We shuffled back to Dr S who then brought our surrogates in to meet us.  We have a young surrogate and an older gal,  Both medically fit and emotionally signed up for this.  Our young surrogate was full of life, excited to meet us and all smiles.  Our older surrogate was shy and quiet but equally as lovely.   We chatted with the girls for a bit then they were on their way.  Dr S got my shot ready and I took it in the arse with ease.  This felt much better and today as well.  Dr S also gave me my trigger shot to be taken at 5:30 this morning and details about arriving to Phoenix for retrieval on Monday.   We packed my trigger with ice packs and headed out to our car back to the hotel.   I set all my alarms to ensure I would not miss the 5:30 am trigger, called the front desk to arrange a wake up call and emailed family to please skype us at that time as well.  At 7 pm we fell asleep and of course awoke at midnight.  Finally around 3:30 am we laid back down and awoke again at 5am, made a coffee and waited for the 5:30 trigger, finally, my last shot!!!!  My sister rang on skype 1 minute before shot time so she got to witness my trigger.  We chatted a bit which was nice and then she was off to enjoy her evening with friends.    We are getting ready to head down for breakfast and then out for the day site seeing.   Tomorrow I cannot eat after 10am in fasting pre-op.  Hopefully I can sleep a bit to make the time pass.

Dec 10, 2010

Mark is here!

Mark is finally here. Airport pickup was stupid....I waited inside by the exit for Mark, all the while he was outside looking for me.  After 1.5 hours we finally connected.  Poor guy travelled for 24hours and had to wait  extra for me.  Rahul got us back to the hotel in record time, at speeds of 90-100km! Go Rahul!
So, the hotel is lovely.  It is called Shervani Nehru Place.  I was in a normal room and got upgraded to a Club Room /Supreme.   It is a bit pricey, so probably not ideal for baby pick up but worth looking at for shorter term stays.  There is a roof top patio with a pool and evening bbq.  I plan to try the bbq this weekend.  Today it is back to Phoenix for a scan than off to meet SM's and lawyer!

Dec 9, 2010

Mark arrives today!!

I am so excited that Mark will be here in 14 hours!!!  Finally...been a long week without him.  Mind you, it has been nice to just chill out and go at an easy pace by myself.  Today I am off to Phoenix for blood and ultrasound in the afternoon and will also need to pick up meds from Dr Shivani.  My retrieval will be on Monday if all goes well and Dr Shivani wants to change my protocol for the last two days to Menopur.  Studies have shown that changing to a more robust med profile for the last few days improves follicle development prior to extraction.  Saturday evening we will meet with the surrogates and lawyer which is quite exciting!  We have two lovely young surrogates and really looking forward to seeing them in person if only for a few minutes.   Edward had mentioned Rahul and his affection for Loretta.  When I brought up the triplets and their adult gaggle Rahul's face lit up!  He said he loved "Grannie" ...sorry Loretta.  He also mentioned Megan and Jo and Tim and others having gone through this crazy journey in Delhi.  He loved working with all of you and has very fond memories.  I need to call him to arrange all my transport today as I also plan to meet Mark at the airport. I am tracking his flight and all looks good so far just 3.5 hours into it.  Have a great day!

Dec 8, 2010

Day 3 in Delhi

Great day!  Good news ~ I didn't screw myself up with oversleeping my injection time.  What a relief!!!  Had my ultrasound with Dr Shivani and all is looking good.  It's about quality not quantity this good embryo will do the trick.
Spent the bulk of the day with Amit.  What a great pleasure to see him again!!  For those of you whom have met him you know what a great guy he is.  We ended up going to M Block market for lunch, Pizza Hut was our choice.  We dined in, otherwise it would have been delivery on the back of a motorcycle.
We also went to Qutub Minar to see the worlds tallest brick tower 238 feet high.  We did not buy entrance tickets but got a view from the street.  Its a ginormous structure!   Here is the wikipedia link to see it...
Here are two pics, one is the beautiful wiki pic and the other is my long distance shot

We then navigated our way through the GK streets to finally find Phoenix Hospital.

 I said my goodbyes to Amit for this time, not forever. 

Now I have the challenge of staying awake for the next 1.5 hours so I do not miss my injections again!
The general manager here at the hotel is delightful and makes sure I am doing well.  We were able to chat for a long while this morning about India, Toronto and world economics.  

Time to eat I suppose, room service sounds good about now.

Dec 7, 2010

Day two recap

Day two was another mixed day.  I started the day off at an easy pace and around 11:30 I received a call from Shilpi to have lunch.  We went to the mall and ate at the Punjab Grill.  Food and company were great!  After this I came back to the hotel and kinda dozed off, for a long long time...and slept beyond my designated time for meds.  When I awoke I was in panic!!!  These meds are so important as is timing,  I cannot believe I missed it and slept thru it all.  I did my shots asap and called Dr Shivani who reassured me it is ok due to the protocol I am  on.  I will not be at ease until I have my U/S later today. 
I have just received a phone call mid post and it is Amit, who is in the lobby!! So, I must go and catch up later....

Day 2

Day two has begun, and I am rested and well fed.  My new accomidation is good and there is lots of English programming on tv to keep me occupied.   Mark is now at ease that I have moved,  and that the visit with Dr S was good.  Henley and I are are chilling out today, and as you can see, he has not adjusted to the time change either!

Typical of India is the non stop horn honking, It kinda soothed me to sleep at times last night (not).

 Today is an off day for me, no appointments at the hospital. I plan to enjoy the day, hang on the roof top patio and do some work.  I am probably not going to venture out of the hotel on my own today - this might interupt my napping schedule!

Dec 6, 2010

Day 1 in Delhi

I landed in the wee hours of Monday morning to the newly renovated Delhi aiport.  Nice airport!  The flights were great, and the trip to Delhi is about 2 hours shorter than Mumbai.  After exiting customs, I headed to the swarm of drivers outside searching for my name card, and quickly found it being held by Rahul.  Rahul helped me with my luggage on the long, long walk to the car park.  The drive to the B&B was about 30 minutes and the streets were pretty clear at this time.  When I arrived at the B&B I was shocked to find men in the room, who were gonna to stay with me...they are apparently the help, here to help with anything required.  Not my idea of of relaxing.  I asked them to leave and Rahul helped me with this.  Being by myself made me nervous enough, never mind having strange men sleeping in the same place as me.  They were kind enough to leave and I was able to settle in somewhat.  I skyped with Mark and had a mini melt down.  I was totally freaked out, being by myself with the possibility of these guys hanging around in my space.   I managed to get some sleep (about 4 hours) and awoke to the men ringing the door bell to come in.  I let them in as I was not sure what was happening and they commenced settling in for the day.   They offered me breakfast and I had some toast.  The whole thing was freaking me out, then  I found out from the owner that some single gentlemen would be checking into the empty rooms in the apartment. I guess I did not understand before booking this that the rooms would be rented out.  I went into panic mode..this is way out of my comfort level.    The place itself is great, two nice patios, comfy beds and loads of room to move around.  Unfortunately, the idea of sharing it was not sitting well with me so I had to move.  I had no choice.  Mark is home in Canada freaking out about me and my safety.   So I made arrangements with Amit, yes, the best travel guy in India, our Amit!!  I had a 2:30 appointment at Phoenix with Dr Shivani and had made arrangements for Rahul or one of his guys to take me.   Shortly after two they arrived and I was en route to the hospital.  It was a quick drive, maybe 10 minutes at the most.  I went into Phoenix to be greeted by Dr Seghal, the hospital director/pediatrician.  He welcomed me and wished me the best of luck and said he will see me in about 9 months time.  Yeah! Positive vibes....
Shortly after Shilpi arrived and escorted me to the waiting area for my ultrasound.  Dr Shivani arrived and we were set for follicle hunting.  Dr Shivani is great, so personable and friendly.   As she prepped the u/s trans vag wand she made a joke about this being my "welcome" to India!   The u/s showed a good 13 follicles with some growth since Friday's scan at home.  We made a small adjustment to my superfact to encourage better and faster growth.  After the u/s we chatted about next steps and surrogates.  All in all a very good appointment.  It was great to meet Dr Shivani finally and also Shilpi.    After my appointment I met up with my driver and tried to explain my move situation, his English is not the best, still learning!  He did amazing and got me moved in less than half an hour.   I checked into my new hotel and feel much safer. The hotel is about 5-10 minutes from Phoenix so it is all good.  I should be asleep now, but have not adjusted to the time change yet.  I did sleep a few hours in the evening, but now ..awake.
Delhi feels similar to Mumbai, yet somewhat different.   I guess I cannot make an assessment after one day.   We will see what tomorrow brings!

It is somewhat timely that our update is live details egg retreival.