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Janeen Derochie's PCOS and IVF Journey featured on top Infertility Online Community, The Slice of Sun.

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Read Janeen's Story here:

______________________

To be honest, I’ve been somewhat avoiding writing my story now for a while. Mostly
because, well I don’t feel like my story has an ending yet. Or maybe I just don’t want this to be the ending. Either way – my story isn’t quite done – whatever the ending ends up being.

We started try to have a baby in 2015. We had decided that in September of 2015 we would start trying. I had a regular period every month (more or less) up until that September. And suddenly, my period stopped.

Being a nurse, I knew that it was unlikely that I was even ovulating if I wasn’t getting a period, so while we weren’t using any form of contraception, we weren’t really actively trying at this point because – well – it seemed pointless. I didn’t wait too many months with no period before making an appointment with our family doctor. He prescribed me a dose of progesterone and sent a referral to a gynecologist.

The Gynecologist continued with progesterone and clomid to try to give me regular ovulation and periods. Now I was having a cycle, but we still weren’t getting pregnant. And so, after 3 months of clomid, he sent a referral to the fertility clinic in my area.

Janeen Derochie's PCOS and IVF Journey featured on top Infertility Online Community, The Slice of Sun.

The initial doctor at the clinic diagnosed me with PCOS and told me to keep trying clomid. “You’re young” he said to me multiple times. I felt like he was brushing me off because even though I was young – it wasn’t working!

We tried the clomid and progesterone for a few more months but then we came across an important interruption in our journey. My niece was diagnosed with biliary atresia at 6 weeks old, and by 6 months, she was already in liver failure and needed a liver transplant. My sister wasn’t a match, but I was. So I took a break from fertility treatments, started using a contraceptive again, and started the process to
be worked up as a liver donor for my niece. This included a lot of scans, blood tests, questionnaires, and waiting. We needed my niece to gain weight before we could do the transplant and so I was basically on call at any time.

Janeen Derochie's PCOS and IVF Journey featured on top Infertility Online Community, The Slice of Sun.

Through those tests, we learned that I have a genetic clotting disorder. Basically, my blood clots about 2x faster than the average person. While this wasn’t a concern for me currently, it could be for my niece, and so they pushed back the transplant a few days. Sadly, neither of us got to donate. My niece passed away suddenly on October 25, 2016.

We were all of course devastated. This truly was one of the hardest times of my entire life. But in my grief, I thought I had found the “reason” behind my infertility. I believe everything happens for a reason, and it was important that I was there for my sister and that I had been worked up as a donor at this time – and If I was pregnant that would not have been possible. Being part of Lyla’s story was so important – and it still is something I will be forever grateful for.

Janeen Derochie's PCOS and IVF Journey featured on top Infertility Online Community, The Slice of Sun.

We obviously needed a few months of a break after Lyla passed away- but after those few months I was ready to start again because I figured it would work!
I went back to Clomid and progesterone because I thought eventually it would work. Each month they would test my blood work to see if I had ovulated on the Clomid. One month I would, and the next month I wouldn’t, so they increased my dose. Same thing – one month=ovulation, next month=no ovulation – increased dose. After 6 months straight of taking Clomid, and on triple the regular dose, I started to really react to what my body was going through. My estrogen blood level was 100x higher than it needed to be (an estradiol level of 15 indicated ovulation, mine was 1500 that last month), and I felt it. I started getting double vision and difficulty seeing at night. And I still didn’t get pregnant.

After that, Clomid wasn’t an option anymore. And my doctor made it seem like I didn’t really have any other options. We switched doctors at the clinic, took a real break of about 6 months, and healed from the previous year. I looked into and started pursuing some alternative treatment like acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine. While I didn’t get pregnant, I felt like this helped me so much.
Acupuncture is relaxing and calming, and I felt like after these 6 months, I was in such a better place mentally and ready for the next step.

This new doctor was so much better for me. He walked through all of my blood work, and gave recommendations based on what he thought would work. He took the time to explain things and didn’t brush me off because “I am young.” We decided to move forward with letrozole and IUI. I think at this point I was a bit more
guarded because nothing else had worked up until this point. Both my sisters had struggled with infertility (different ways) but both of them just needed a bit of Clomid and they were pregnant! And so, when that didn’t work for me, I was a bit surprised. I think this was the point when I started to accept that I actually did have “Infertility” and wasn’t just “taking a bit longer to have a baby.” However, I still felt confident that IUI would eventually work and if not – well we always had IVF.

Janeen Derochie's PCOS and IVF Journey featured on top Infertility Online Community, The Slice of Sun.

I hate ovulation tests – I don’t trust them. And so, we monitored my ovulation with ultrasound. It meant I had to go for a lot more ultrasounds, but I liked being able to see and measure the follicles growing. It made me feel more confident in the process. Each IUI went by the book. A beautiful follicle grew each time just to the right size, we took the trigger shot right on time, my husband’s sample was always “impressive” and the insemination went without difficulty. And then 32 days later I would get my period. Each time.

After 3 transfers, we felt like we were wasting our money. While IUI isn’t so expensive in comparison with IVF, it wasn’t working, and we were ready to move onto something with better statistics. So, we started preparing (mentally, financially, and physically) for IVF. And we also made the best decision – we got a dog.

Janeen Derochie's PCOS and IVF Journey featured on top Infertility Online Community, The Slice of Sun.

Kona healed my heart in so many ways. She reminds me that life is good, and that there is joy in the little things. Every day I am thankful for my fur-baby. We signed the consent forms for IVF in April of 2019. Honestly, I couldn’t believe we were
there. I had thought something would work before this. After all, as I had always been reminded, I was young. When we started on this journey, I was 23. Now I am 27 – but in the fertility world that is still very young. Because of my age, and my high AMH, my doctor was very careful to put me on a regimen that would help me to avoid OHSS- and man am I grateful that he did. One other blessing was that
because of the tests we had done for the liver donation, we learned about the clotting disorder. I was put on a blood thinner prophylactically and although that additional shot stinks, I’m grateful we are able to be proactive about that and not have the risk of developing a blood clot! It’s the small blessings!

By day 4 of stims my ovaries were touching each other on ultrasound. It was very clear that I was reacting to the medications very quickly and significantly. I went for an ultrasound every day after day 4, and each day our numbers got higher and higher. They made it very clear that a fresh transfer was out of the question and they continued to decrease my doses of meds.

I stim-ed for 9 days before our trigger shot. I felt like I had baseballs in my pelvis because – well – I kind of did! My right ovary was so large it actually went in a horseshoe shape around my pelvis. Normal blood estrogen during pregnancy in around 8000-9000. On day 9 of stim my blood estrogen level was 18 000! I had responded to the meds – that’s for sure!

Janeen Derochie's PCOS and IVF Journey featured on top Infertility Online Community, The Slice of Sun.


Egg retrieval day was in so many ways not as bad as I thought it would be. They were able to retrieve 60 eggs! And of those 60, 47 of them were able to be fertilized.
I was so excited with those numbers. Until they called a few days later. Because we had so many embryos, a lot of them were not very good quality. By day 2, only 4
embryos were growing well. Those 5-6 days they let them grow were some of the hardest days I’ve had in this journey. It was truly a roller-coaster. But when they called be on day 6, they told me that a lot of my embryos had caught up, and they were able to collect 10 that we could send to genetic testing. Of those 10, 7 came back genetically normal! While those days were hard, the result was exactly what I had been hoping for!

Next came the transfers.

I was so stressed about the transfers, because this was where it really counted.
FET #1 was on July 8 2019. I cried like a baby when that little embryo went into my uterus. For the first time, I was pregnant. At least until proven otherwise. Not long after the transfer, I knew it didn’t work. I felt exactly the same, and while I waited for
the beta – I wasn’t exactly surprised when it came back negative.

I was ready for another transfer right away. FET #2 was September 17th , 2019.
This time I thought it would work. I felt different after this transfer. On September 24, after being up most of the night with nausea, I decided to take a pregnancy
test. I was SHOCKED when it was POSITIVE.

Janeen Derochie's PCOS and IVF Journey featured on top Infertility Online Community, The Slice of Sun.
5 years of trying I had never had a positive test until that day. I loved it. I took a test (sometimes 2) every day for 5 days, each day loving those 2 little pink lines. I
waited a few days to tell my husband just to be sure. The look on his face when I told him was pure joy. I will never forget that look.

My beta test was on Saturday. Saturday morning, I wanted to see those 2 pink lines again, but this time – the test was negative. What? I was gutted. But hey- it was probably just a bad test. I had 5 other positive tests that told me I was pregnant! But deep down I knew something was wrong.

My beta came back at 18. Truthfully – it might as well had been 0. 18 is basically nothing. For 5 glorious days I had been pregnant. And now, just like all the other treatments before, this one had also failed. But the hole that this one had left seemed deeper. Each other time I told myself that I can’t be sad about something I never had. But this time – it was so close. I had it just at my fingertips before it
slipped away. I was truly devastated. This time I really needed answers. We knew my lining was good, we knew the egg was genetically normal. Why did it fail? My doctor didn’t know. So, we geared up for some other tests. After a few tests, we learned that I had inflammation in my uterus. We treated it with a 10-day course of antibiotics that made me feel awful, re-did the biopsy and guess what? Last week we learned that the inflammation is gone! Amazing. We take the little wins sometimes, right? It’s not the final goal – but its one step. We can celebrate those too.

Janeen Derochie's PCOS and IVF Journey featured on top Infertility Online Community, The Slice of Sun.

So here we are, getting ready for FET #3. I wish things were simple. I wish I felt like this one was going to work. I’m doing another transfer because – well – I can’t accept that I’m just done. I don’t want to go through it all again, but I also can’t be done. I hold on to the positive stories other people share, praying every day that my story will end like that. But I also know that it might not. I have had to accept the grim reality that I may never have children of my own. My story might not have the ending I’m hoping for. And I’m trying to be ok with that. Some days are easier than others – we all know that. But I try to remind myself that I have countless blessings, and a lot to offer even if I am not a mother in the traditional sense.

Life is not easy; it wasn’t meant to be. This challenge has taught me to be kinder, and gentler with people. It has taught me to be grateful for what I have and to try to live more in the moment. It has taught me to be grateful for the body I have been given (that has been a hard lesson). But Infertility has also taken things from me; my optimism, my hope at times, my plans for the future. It has broken my heart on more than one occasion and left me to pick up the pieces.

There is an ancient Japanese art called Kintsugi where broken plates and bowls are put back together with gold – and they are more beautiful and valuable because of the break. I like to think I am like that. Even though I have been broken, I hope I am more beautiful because of the cracks.

If I could give any advice to someone at the beginning of this journey – well, I have a lot that I would give. But I think right now what I would say is: don’t wait. Don’t wait to go on that trip. Don’t wait to start that tradition. Don’t wait to be happy.
For so long I put things off or planned my life around the fact that I MIGHT be pregnant. And I missed out on opportunities because of it. You can do everything you want to right now, whether you have kids or not. Don’t base your happiness on something that might happen. I know what it’s like to long for something, for your heart to break again and again. I know it feels like you can’t be happy unless this happens – but I also know you can. You can find happiness in the journey. Things might look different than you expected, but they always will.


Life is wonderful, if we let it be. Infertility has taught me that. I pray my story ends the way I want it to, but if it doesn’t, well, it will still be a beautiful story.

Instagram: @jdero3

Facebook: Janeen Derochie

Janeen Derochie's PCOS and IVF Journey featured on top Infertility Online Community, The Slice of Sun.

Janeen Derochie's PCOS and IVF Journey featured on top Infertility Online Community, The Slice of Sun.

Janeen Derochie's PCOS and IVF Journey featured on top Infertility Online Community, The Slice of Sun.

 ☀️ CLICK HERE TO BUY THE BEST SOCKS ON THE PLANET TO HELP WOMEN WITH INFERTILITY! A portion of every single sale will go to an incredible woman experiencing infertility. They make the BEST gifts for women experiencing infertility to remind them they are loved OR to wear to your own appointments while working hard to grow your family to remind you that you have this community of women linking arms with you. You are incredible, sister!

CLICK HERE to join our safe, private Facebook group to meet other incredible women who are walking your path. ☀️

To read Brittnee Grop's infertility and adoption story, click HERE

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