After Whipping Obesity, I’m Now Fighting Cancer

June 12th was the last time I posted an update on my weight. A few days after that, I received some of the worst news I’ve ever had in my life, and stepping on the scale was the farthest thing from my mind. While running errands, I got a call from our fertility doctor and was told the reason for my constant spotting. I have cancer.

I remember pulling off the side of the road, but not much after that. The second I heard “cancer” my mind sort of went on autopilot. I vaguely remember hearing something about “survivability” and “cure rate.” The only thing I could think of was getting back home – fast.

Once home, I made it to my front door before the doctor called me back, letting me know the oncologist he told me about would see me next week. I don’t even remember him talking about an oncologist, but I said fine, sure, and we hung up.

I spent the rest of the day crying my eyes out. The news was a double whammy. Not only were our hopes of having a child via IVF dashed, but now I’m googling “survival rates” to see what my chances of living were. That weekend (yep, I got the news Friday morning) I spent most of my time vacillating between stewing in my emotions (sadness, fear, anger) and Googlepalooza. Read More

IVF, Hormones & Diet: The Balancing Act

weigh in may 22

So the weight gain thanks to my estrogen injections stopped…for now.

This week I bid adieu to my estrogen injections and (temporarily?) the weight gains. My weight held steady this week, and considering my hormones are all over the place, that’s a victory.

I still feel bloated and a bit moody … a bit like having PMS on and off for 2 weeks. Ugh!

Estrogen Injections – Mixed Results
(Warning: Female stuff ahead. I suggest the more delicate flowers out there read with caution or skip to the diet changes.) After 2 weeks of taking estrogen, the results were a bit mixed. On the plus side, the ultrasound indicated that my uterine lining thickened like it was suppose to.

On the minus side, while I was taking the estrogen, I noticed that the day following the injection, I’d start spotting. While it’s not typical to have vaginal bleeding during these injections, some women do. It turns out my estrogen level is lower than the doctor would like.

So now I’m 3 days (out of 7) into taking my new med – progesterone. The idea is that the new med will get my menstrual cycle properly regulated. About 5-7 days after my last dose, it will induce my period. Then the birth control pills start up.

Yep, I need birth control pills to get pregnant. Oh, the irony.

Then a saline sonogram and afterwards we might start the estrogen injections again.

Improving The Diet … & Bank Account!
On the diet front I noticed that I’m experiencing cold hands and feet on fasting days. What’s up with that?

I have too much of a calorie deficit on non-fasting days. Seems strange since I only eat when I’m hungry. That means I need to retool what I’m doing by upping my protein back to 6 ounces per meal. I cut back to 4 ounces months ago. Sure enough, I started feeling colder not too long after cutting back and just didn’t put 2 and 2 together.

I’m also making a sincere attempt at adding more fish into my diet, eating it twice this week. In June I’m going to start a seafood challenge – eating fish 2 times a week. That means I’m on the hunt for recipes as culinary skills in this area are severely lacking.

Besides improvement on the fish front, efforts to cut coffee from my daily grind are going well. This week I only enjoyed the Black Java during the weekend and limited myself to 2 cups in the morning. I expect by June I’ll be so over coffee.

As for cutting my ties to wine, I’m making progress there too. We no longer have bottles at home. But when I go out for dinner, I have a glass or two with my meal. I’ve essentially created a habit. Normally I’d consider this a little indulgence rather than a habit. The problem is we’re going out to eat far too often – 4-5 times a week! That’s a lot of wine.

And its wrecking havoc on our bank account (cost of restaurant + wasted food at home = stupidity). It also kicks me out of ketosis since my body burns the alcohol before any fat. Not to mention the sugar in wine is getting stored somewhere.

It also can’t be great on the hormone front either.

I don’t want to set foot in a restaurant until June. And even then I’m limiting eating out to twice a month. That way its more of a special treat.

Weekly Weigh-In: The IVF Side Effect

weigh in May 14

Yes, I’m up 4 pounds. But it isn’t all food. My IVF treatments are coming with a little side effect.

I’m up about 4 pounds this week. After a slight freak out this morning, my husband reminded me of something that may have been the big contributor to those extra pounds – I’m taking estrogen injections.

I started the injections 10 days ago as part of our in vitro fertilization plan.

The estrogen is helping build up my uterine lining. Next week I go in for some blood work and a transvaginal ultrasound lining check. If my lining is thickened and my hormones are raging at the appropriate level, then I may have a new medication to take along with the estrogen before we begin our first embryo transfer.

The shots, taken every 3 days are intramuscular, and have to be given in my butt. So that’s how the hubby is participating in this…he gets to stick a very long needle in my ass. So far he’s doing a good job – not much pain and no bruising. Read More