Why I’m Grateful for My Career (especially during IVF); 2 Month Low-Carb Update

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Why I’m Grateful for Work: If you have been keeping up with my Facebook page, you know that we have been receiving nearly daily updates on our 7 embryos since our egg retrieval last week and are now down to 2 surviving embryos, which we are waiting on genetic testing for another week now to see if they are genetically normal.

While I did not feel well when I was on the injections and right after the egg retrieval, I am still grateful I kept working. Each day I have had to wait until 4:30 PM for the call from the doctor to find out which embryos have survived. Thank god for work to keep me busy or I don’t know what I would do with myself during that time all day long to be distracted.  Each time when the doctor has called he has had a tone of voice like the Grim Reeper, almost like the tone of voice when you have found out someone has died to tell me how many embryos were lost that day. Fun. Don’t get me wrong- having a 3 year old keeps me busy too at night and on weekends, but he is at school during the day.

To be frank, I have been feeling a little down since our last update last night that only 2 embryos remain. While I know it only takes one, with odds of 50% of embryos having genetic abnormalities, if I apply those odds we are looking at only one remaining embryo next week. We could fare better or worse, but I’m just applying the black and white/scientific odds/averages.

Friends and family are encouraging me to be more positive and I truly appreciate the encouragement, but I like knowing my odds. If I were gambling, I would want to know the black and white odds. IVF is a complete gamble and we knew this all along. So I like to prepare myself for what news we may get next week. We knew the odds of 50% of embryos surviving to day 5, and that statistic was correct. In fact, unfortunately we actually fared slightly worse than the average, since only 2 out of 7 made it. If I had no idea about those odds and that we were likely going to lose at least half, I think I would be feeling worse right now. I knew what the odds were going in so that was helpful to me, so sorry if I seem like I’m being a pessimist. I would rather be realistic.

A quick funny story that other working moms will relate to- a good friend of mine who does not yet have kids encouraged me to binge watch TV last night to be distracted from the news I received yesterday. I was thinking, does Peppa Pig and Mickey Mouse count? LOL when you have a 3 year old and you work, there is no time to even watch a single TV show unless you miss out on sleep, and I choose sleep! Bless her sweet heart, she has no idea how time intensive being a parent is. She will find out soon enough.

And don’t worry, I am definitely getting myself out of this funk today.  And I know it only would take one embryo to achieve our dreams of a second child. I’m grateful for work which is bringing me to NYC tomorrow for a conference which will be celebrating and honoring fabulous women in the insurance industry that have been nominated. I’ve been going to this conference every year since about 2012 and I love that there is a conference dedicated to honoring women in my industry. I have read up on many of these women and many of them are Moms too, so I think they are amazing to have made it as far as they have in their careers and also juggled motherhood. Ashley Judd will be the keynote speaker on Friday too. And of course, who doesn’t love NYC.

Even better icing on the cake, Devin and Alexander will also be coming out on Friday after my conference ends so we can spend the weekend in NYC and see Christmas in NYC together as a family. I’m so excited for Alexander to experience NYC and even better Christmas in NYC- he is going to LOVE the huge tree at Rockefeller Center! I’m so grateful for a career that I love, and for it being a wonderful distraction while I go through the ups and downs of IVF. 

2 Month Low-Carb Update: It’s been just over 2 months since I began eating low carb high fat very strictly. As I had mentioned in my prior blogs, my doctor highly recommended low carb for his IVF patients.

I have no idea if eating this way helped my egg quality, especially since we went from 7 embryos down to 2, but I hope that it did help the 2 that survived. Over these last few months I have been diligent about eating high protein/non-processed foods, I cut out Diet Coke and most other artificial sweeteners, I cut back on wine intake, and I have not been doing any strenuous exercise as recommended by my doctor. Sometimes I wonder though, when I see crack-addicts and overly obese people getting pregnant- does it really matter how you eat and if you are healthy or not? I think in the end the big man upstairs just decides when it’s time for a woman to have a baby. It’s all a crapshoot. Bleh. But at least I can feel like I did what I could to help the process.

Just this week (and it’s only Wednesday), I have had 5 people/friends unprovoked tell me how skinny I am looking, and they also said particularly said it shows in my face. I’m sure between the low carb eating regimen and overall stress from IVF has been quite the efficient diet combo. The odd part is that the injections actually made me gain a few lbs for a short term, but I am now back to where I was before starting the injections, maybe about a pound or two less.  All in all since I started eating low carb hardcore in October, I have lost 8 lbs.

Just last week, I decided to add potatoes and beans back into my diet on occassion, as they are high fiber foods that come from nature that I really enjoy and I do not want to lose any more weight. I have never been a big fan of fruit, but if the mood strikes I will start to eat fruit too. Now to continue to treat low carb as a lifestyle habit long-term, especially with the holidays being here and lots of carb-alicious goodies around!

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