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Dealing with Infertility: IVF + Mental Health Update

Stopping in for an IVF update and how I’m doing physically and mentally as we try to deal with my infertility and make a baby the new fashioned way!

Thank you to Amanda for the opportunity to Think Out Loud and Gretch and Kristen for What’s New with You!

IVF Update

We are now past Day 5 of IVF stimulation meds (see this post for understandable info on the IVF Protocol and Process!) and I’ve had to make serious lifestyle changes. That means no running or exercise that involves contorting the body (like yoga or hip flexion) and no sex, and I have cut myself off from alcohol.

I have nothing to live for It’s annoying, but I am dealing with it.

I went in for my second ultrasound and labs today, and they called yesterday afternoon to say that my body is a lemon my estrogen levels are still low, so they are upping the Follistim / Gonal F, or, as Alex so excellently said, the “twisty” and not the “mixy.” (I thought that was hilarious). Yes, my dear doctor husband, the twisty. My estrogen has gone up, but not nearly as much as they would like. BUT, as the nurse did say, this is why we check early on and make sure that we have the right dosage. So now we way for Friday, when I will have my next round of US and labs and see where we are then!

Physically Feeling

Physically, I still feel the same. I ran Tuesday, and yesterday (Wednesday) I bundled up and took the bus to my appointment then walked home (about 3 miles). I was also bundling up because I had to take Ridley out that morning and it was 10 degrees outside. So I had on a helluva lot of layers, and only my eyes could be seen. But between walking her and the walk back, I got in 10,000 steps, so that made me feel pretty decent. I “wanted” to do some weights later, but I didn’t really, so I didn’t, and I just walked a little bit more inside (trying to finish my book) and called it a day. 

And now we are back to Chiberia.

I’m not going to lie–there was a part of me that was thinking, “I feel fine, I don’t feel xyz, I’m sure a little running won’t hurt.” But I reminded myself that I am in it to win it. But I did have to run a little bit with Ridley to try to wear her out. But I’m being very careful.

As of right now, I’m not feeling that bloated or moody, but I am having (sorry guys) spotting, which they said was normal after coming off birth control. I was still impressed, considering, well, this isn’t the first time I’ve come off birth control! So, you go, body! You get that spotting! But, of course, that doesn’t mean much (see above), and it still isn’t going to be an easy road. But it made me feel pretty good.

My skin is still messed up, but it is less itchy. The pityriasis rosea seems to be stabilizing, and not creating new spots, but I still feel less that cute. So while I may not be bloated and PMS-y yet, I do have that to contend with mentally. Fortunately (?), it is winter, so I am pretty much covered from head to toe at all times. 

Mentally Feeling

I’m happy with my approach and relationship with food as well: I’m continuing my “marathon diet without marathon training” regimen and keeping my calories high with a focus on getting all the good stuff and making sure that I get my healthy fats in. I will admit that I’m having a lot of sugar and candy right now, and I’m reaching for a few too many convenience foods (like bars and such), but nothing that is that unhealthy or counterproductive. And we can’t all be perfect.

Like this weekend, I ate cookies and Cracker Jack after a huge dinner and more, because I have no will power but also because you know what? F it. It’s not going to kill me, it was fun, and it’s all for Yoshi! And it was delicious.

I had a conversation with my therapist/shrink on Tuesday that was really eye opening with regards to how self critical I can be. On this blog, I know that I come across as this positive, confident, and secure person (well, I think I come across as one of those things at any one time), and while I am not the type that sits there and hates on myself, I definitely tend to see the imperfections in myself first. I know that I am a good egg, but I see my speckles first. Especially when it comes to my career and my expectations of my career. I’m feeling another Therapy Thoughts post brewing…

I’m going to cut out early and go snuggle with my puppy and husband. And yes, that is all that we are going to do, because you know we aren’t allowed to do anything else.

But first, I am going to go get a snack. Hey, it’s all for Yoshi, right? πŸ˜€

Tell me something fun and exciting in your life!

Cracker Jack, Chips, or Pretzels?

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  • Reply Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious

    It’s really easy to focus on the negative and not the positive. You’re not the only one who does that either! I’m very hard on myself. Keep up the good work and eating!
    Megan @ Skinny Fitalicious recently posted…Frequently Asked Questions About Eat To Lose WeightMy Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 5:12 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Yes ma’am! And I now you are pretty hard on yourself–I’ve seen it!

      January 5, 2017 at 4:54 pm
  • Reply Lisa @ Mile by Mile

    Glad you were able to get in a nice long walk! I am way less motivated to walk outside when its freezing cold out. Glad you were able to work through some stuff in therapy. And I hope your body responds well to your increased meds!
    Lisa @ Mile by Mile recently posted…3 Simple Ways To Improve Your Running In 2017My Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 5:49 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I wore ALL THE CLOTHES. And my quads STILL locked up!

      January 5, 2017 at 4:54 pm
  • Reply Katie @ Talk Less, Say More

    Sending you lots of love girl! I’m glad you’re working through some stuff in therapy. I swear it’s something that EVERYONE should do at some point in their lives!
    Katie @ Talk Less, Say More recently posted…Hello? Is anyone there?My Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 5:54 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Thank you love. I definitely agree that we all could use some CBT!

      January 5, 2017 at 4:50 pm
  • Reply Jamie@The Mom Gene

    We always see our speckles more than most. That’s what introspective people do. It can lead to being hard on yourself or it can lead to changes that make things happen. I think the positive/confident attitude doesn’t actually have to be a feeling, it can be the actions you take regardless of your feelings. You’re doing great. You’re taking care of yourself and listening to the professionals. Keep on walking Ridley and take those deep breaths. Oh and DEFINITELY cracker jacks.
    Jamie@The Mom Gene recently posted…Animals on DisplayMy Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 6:07 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      This is why we get along and are becoming fast friends.

      January 5, 2017 at 4:50 pm
  • Reply Gretchen

    Thanks for always sharing these updates and letting us know how IVF really goes. I think it’s so brave of you <3 I'm also on a no alcohol diet (not for the same reason but I can empathize with that part!)

    Thanks for joining our linkup πŸ™‚
    Gretchen recently posted…What’s New With You? Linkup #12My Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 6:20 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Crazy girl. Go have a glass of wine.

      January 5, 2017 at 4:50 pm
  • Reply Heather @Lunging Through Life

    Pretzels πŸ˜‰ Wait.. I thought you couldn’t run and you ran Tuesday and Wednesday. Did I read that wrong? (My brain is in a fog with being sick.. gahh) Regardless, I’m glad you’re getting out and getting fresh air! It honestly does so much for the soul. Praying for you and little babe!!! πŸ™‚ Things are all worth it in the end!
    Heather @Lunging Through Life recently posted…6 Favorite Crockpot Meals I make Again and AgainMy Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 6:25 am
  • Reply Run Colby run

    I need to be on a no- alcohol diet but My will power simply doesn’t exist. And pretzels. Because beer. Take it easy, Homegirl. Eye on the Yoshi! Sending you healthy, positive Yoshi vibes! Xo
    Run Colby run recently posted…Running, Celebrating and Settling In…My Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 6:41 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Yoshi really wants a beer right now.

      January 5, 2017 at 4:49 pm
  • Reply Kimberly Hatting

    Fun and exciting? Well, I have survived two continuous non-running days (no withdrawal, body shakes, night sweats, etc.)…and I haven’t really missed it. Of course, it’s sub-ZERO outside so the excitement of lacing-up is pretty dim since it will involve time on the ‘mill. That’s my fun and exciting situation πŸ˜‰ Chin UP!
    Kimberly Hatting recently posted…2017 – Focusing on FUNMy Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 7:03 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Run a few mill miles for me!

      January 5, 2017 at 4:48 pm
  • Reply kat

    Wowza – what an experience girl. I applaud you for giving up running. You can still do some exercise though right? Or is it like, do nothing to stress the body? Oh man…my ED would rear its ugly head for SURE.
    As for the non-alcohol part, well I don’t drink anyway so that wouldn’t be a problem for me at all! Now if they said no chocolate, THAT would be a major issue…
    kat recently posted…TOL #115 – Starting 2017 Off RightMy Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 7:33 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      If I had to give up chocolate, running, alcohol, and sex….
      I’m not sure who I would be anymore!

      January 5, 2017 at 4:48 pm
  • Reply Michelle

    I am so glad things are going well for you!!! I too try to be positive and upbeat but can be my own worst enemy, too.
    Something exciting? My husband will be home NEXT month, and I can’t wait!!!
    Michelle recently posted…Lost and Found, 2016My Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 7:52 am
    • Reply suzlyfe


      January 5, 2017 at 4:47 pm
  • Reply Cora

    Girl, you take any “spot” of encouragement (sorry – had to) and cheers it to the rooftop. Any step is a positive step and I’m (non-alcoholic) cheers-ing right along with you. And then when you’re done cheers-ing, use your glass to give those negative thoughts about yourself a sucker punch.
    Cora recently posted…The Desire to Purge: The Costs of Being an Introvert and Super-FeelerMy Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 8:05 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I bet you could write a super dramatic scene about that… I dare you!

      January 5, 2017 at 4:47 pm
  • Reply Jessica Marie @ FlashFitTrainer

    Something exciting you ask. Today you ask. LOL. I am putting in my notice at work today to pursue self-employment and I’m a ball of nerves!!!!
    Jessica Marie @ FlashFitTrainer recently posted…The Ultimate Fitness Word CollectionMy Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 8:23 am
  • Reply Suzy

    Speckles are just marks on the map to where people find our hearts.
    Suzy recently posted…From Deep to SteepMy Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 8:35 am
  • Reply Emily

    Thankful for your honesty and sharing all the ups and downs Susie; I’m glad you still have an opportunity to do some walking and stay active, so that can help you get out that energy. Keep being gentle. <3
    Emily recently posted…Why Me Lord? Learning that Life in God is An Incredible MiracleMy Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 8:48 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      That is just what I am trying to do, Emily–be gentle. Perfectly said.

      January 5, 2017 at 4:45 pm
  • Reply Kristen

    chips all day everyday for me. it’s a problem. haha.
    i’m sorry you can’t run or do yoga or anything, i can’t imagine how frustrating that is, do you know if you will be able to afterwards if everything goes okay? sorry, i don’t know a lot about the process, so thank you for sharing! and i am definitely super critical of myself as well. i’m a lot nicer to myself than i used to be, but i am still way more critical of myself than anyone else.

    January 5, 2017 at 8:50 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      What type of chips, though, that is the question! I kind of it frustrating not to be able to do many things, but I will get back to them eventually. Hopefully prenatal yoga!

      January 5, 2017 at 4:45 pm
  • Reply Kelli @ Hungry Hobby

    I think we are all too hard on ourselves, I know my friends wouldn’t talk to me the way I talk to me, that’s for damn sure. EYE ON THE PRIZE GIRL EYE ON THE PRIZE!
    Kelli @ Hungry Hobby recently posted…How to Make Anti-Inflammatory “Instant” OatsMy Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 9:06 am
    • Reply suzlyfe


      January 5, 2017 at 4:44 pm
  • Reply Tiffany @ The Chi-Athlete

    I <3 every intention of this post, lady. ALL FOR YOSHI!
    Tiffany @ The Chi-Athlete recently posted…That’s One Way to Use $1100…My Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 9:21 am
  • Reply Joyce @ The Hungry Caterpillar

    That IVF treatment sounds very intense and not always super-fun. Sounds like you’re doing a good job focusing on the positive–and staying warm! It is so cold in Kansas right now; I wished I’d bundled up as much as you had when I went out yesterday.
    Joyce @ The Hungry Caterpillar recently posted…Top 5 Low-FODMAP Recipes of 2016My Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 9:34 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Girl, you gotta do what you gotta do. And I don’t do cold. NOPE

      January 5, 2017 at 4:43 pm
  • Reply Laura @ This Runner's Recipes

    I hope the change in med helps! The long walks I think will be good as well – we distance runners need some form of endurance exercise for our brains! Those little victories like the spotting help – that’s got to mean something, right? Enjoy those puppy and husband snuggles!
    Laura @ This Runner’s Recipes recently posted…Winter 2017 GoalsMy Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 9:42 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Snuggling with the puppy (who just got a bath and smells sooooo gooooooood) right now!

      January 5, 2017 at 4:43 pm
  • Reply Donna

    Visiting from the link up! Wishing you all the best on your IVF journey. I have a much bigger ‘salty tooth’ than sweet tooth and pretzels are my favourite! Although I won’t say no to a bag of chips either!
    Donna recently posted…January Life 2017My Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 10:06 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I’m an equal opportunity tooth, thus why I like Cracker Jack πŸ˜€

      January 5, 2017 at 4:42 pm
  • Reply Allie

    You are so awesome.
    Also, I think we could get a group therapy discount since one of the last things mine said to me was “how do I put this? Stop belittling yourself so much.” Um, yep, ok…
    Allie recently posted…Treadmill Workouts for RunnersMy Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 10:07 am
  • Reply Babydoll_Brea


    And I love your husband’s sense of humor πŸ™‚ #twistynotmixy
    Babydoll_Brea recently posted…Weekend Snapshots: Concerts, Craft Fairs and Thirteen Point One Miles, Oh My!My Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 10:09 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I know, right? CRACK ME UP

      January 5, 2017 at 4:41 pm
  • Reply Ange // Cowgirl Runs

    On Sunday (or maybe Monday?) I had two homemade cranberry bliss bars becuase they were there and what was I saving them for?!

    I’m sending you and your hormones so many good thoughts right now.
    Ange // Cowgirl Runs recently posted…Currently: January 2017My Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 10:39 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I like that–What am I saving them for? Very, very good questions.

      January 5, 2017 at 4:38 pm
  • Reply Divya @ Eat Teach Blog

    Sending you and Yoshi lots of virtual love <3

    January 5, 2017 at 11:09 am
  • Reply Jennifer @ Fit Nana

    I’m all about the chips. In fact, I’d love to be EATING all the chips right now. Can’t even remember the last time I had a Cracker Jack! Do they still come with the prizes in the box?

    I think we can all really be self-critical. I also think it’s great that you have someone to talk to and to help you through some of this because more hormones = more emotions = WHOA! But, I hope your hormones pick up!
    Jennifer @ Fit Nana recently posted…TOL #9 – JUST KEEP SWIMMING!My Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 11:31 am
    • Reply suzlyfe

      They have little stickers that they claim are prizes, but that is just a lie. I am really glad that I set up my therapist beforehand!

      January 5, 2017 at 4:34 pm
  • Reply Erin

    Pretzels for life! Unless there are Doritos available …
    The waiting part of infertility treatment is so hard but it sounds like you are doing a good job at keeping yourself busy. Try not to stress too much about things (and from personal experience I recommend staying away from the temptation to google every little symptom you have) and enjoy your new normal for now:)

    January 5, 2017 at 12:12 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Nacho Cheesier or Cooler Ranch?
      I am staying way away from Dr Google. He leads nowhere good!

      January 5, 2017 at 4:33 pm
  • Reply Cynthia @ You Signed Up For WHAT?!

    Thank you for sharing the details of your journey – and you are amazing and strong for incorporating all the lifestyle changes and restrictions with such a good attitude. Lots of positive thoughts from me to you and I’ll follow along more closely now that I’m out of my 2016 craziness. Love to ya.
    Cynthia @ You Signed Up For WHAT?! recently posted…7 Ways to Pay It Forward in 2017My Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 1:32 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Love to YOU! I’m glad that your 2016 is over–you need a break!

      January 5, 2017 at 4:32 pm
  • Reply Ashley @ A Lady Goes West

    Hi Susie! I know it’s super hard to limit your exercise and movement when that’s something that you love. But if you think about the greater goal and know this is temporary – you can do it! Sending you hugs! πŸ™‚
    Ashley @ A Lady Goes West recently posted…Why we made the switch to organic pet food for our little dogMy Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 2:08 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Thank you, Ashley! It isn’t so hard when I think about the long term πŸ˜€

      January 5, 2017 at 4:26 pm
  • Reply Linz @ Itz Linz

    follistim is the drug that helped get me pregnant! thoughts and prayers your way, girl! xo
    Linz @ Itz Linz recently posted…what to get someone who has everythingMy Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 2:16 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Thank you Linz! Fingers crossed!

      January 5, 2017 at 4:26 pm
  • Reply Kerri Mcgrail

    I know it must be hard for you to resist running, but hang in there! Sending all the positive vibes your way!
    Kerri Mcgrail recently posted…Spicy Baked Sweet Potato Wedges: Oil Free-VeganMy Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 6:10 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Thank you, Kerri! I will hang in there πŸ˜€

      January 6, 2017 at 5:50 am
  • Reply Heather @ Polyglot Jot

    You are so awesome for going for a 3 mile walk in 10 degree weather! I know it must be so hard to resist so many things that you enjoy, but it seems like your mindset is in the right place. I hope things continue to go well. I too struggle with being hardest on m yself too. I’ve been trying to replace my negative thoughts with a compliment to myself and it’s helped a bit in changing the way I think about myself.
    Also, I’m totally a chip gal!
    Heather @ Polyglot Jot recently posted…BIG NEWS!My Profile

    January 5, 2017 at 8:02 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      That is a great idea. I think I just need to rephrase and reconceptualize my approach to myself as well.

      January 6, 2017 at 5:50 am
  • Reply Bri

    You’ve got this girl, like you do with everything else! Treat this treatment like a new BQ personal best!!
    Bri recently posted…A strength coach tries to get InstaFit: Which popular exercise program is more effective – Kayla Itsines Bikini Body Guide or the Tone It Up Challenge?My Profile

    January 6, 2017 at 7:44 am
    • Reply suzlyfe


      January 6, 2017 at 9:13 am
  • Reply Helly on the Run

    I, too, am known for being positive but am quick to find the speckles on my egg as well. Especially career wise, or lack thereof in my department.

    Thank you for being so honest. One of the many things I love about you <3
    Helly on the Run recently posted…How Running Became My JobMy Profile

    January 6, 2017 at 12:01 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Love you right back. I totally understand that–especially because you went from full time to not. But you have the mom job, which is the best and hardest job of all!

      January 6, 2017 at 3:04 pm
  • Reply Kristy from Southern In Law

    Oh, Suz! I am hoping your estrogen wakes u and joins the party ASAP!

    And as for crunchy carbs… pretzels, please! Gluten free ones don’t taste as good as I remember but if you smother them in nutella you can’t tell πŸ˜‰
    Kristy from Southern In Law recently posted…Recent Things: Siri Fails, Post Christmas Depression and Celebrations!My Profile

    January 6, 2017 at 8:41 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      Smother the world in nutella. Just do it.

      January 7, 2017 at 7:57 am
  • Reply san

    I am glad you have a therapist (already) that will accompany you on this journey!
    san recently posted…Five Guidelines for 2017My Profile

    January 7, 2017 at 5:27 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      I just think that we could all use some CBT, especially when we are going through something like this!

      January 8, 2017 at 7:01 am
  • Reply Sarah @ BucketListTummy

    At least the estrogen is up slightly and hope it goes up more soon!! I’m glad you’re feeling all around pretty good – you’re in it to WIN IT!
    Sarah @ BucketListTummy recently posted…Top 10’s of Bucket List TummyMy Profile

    January 7, 2017 at 8:30 pm
    • Reply suzlyfe

      That I am! Hanging strong!

      January 8, 2017 at 7:00 am

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