When Hibernating Is Easier

I've been having a bit of a break from social media for the last week or so, and it's actually been quite nice. I'm missing it a lot less than I thought I would, and I think it's been good for my emotional state.

Miss Toddler is now 2.5 years old. Where did the time go? It's bittersweet - this age is fun, but exhausting. I love seeing her grow up, but I miss the years that have already passed. She's growing up, we're getting older, and we've still made no progress on giving her the sibling that we've dreamed about for so long.

It also brings to light another not-so-great milestone; the fact that we've now almost hit the 2-year TTC/infertility mark again. It took us two years last time - but the difference then was that we found out we were pregnant soon after that milestone. This time, we're at 2 years and have nothing to show for it - except for the two miscarriages and a whole lot of wasted $$ on failed IVF cycles and procedures. It really hurts.

I always knew that it would be hard trying for a second child, which is why we jumped back on this merry-go-round as early as we did. But in my heart, I was desperately hoping that we'd paid our dues struggling for #1, and that we'd have a better time going for #2. Or, you know, be one of those couples who is lucky enough to have a miracle, or easily achieved, pregnancy the second time around. Hope is a dangerous thing sometimes. You want to be realistic, but you still always have the hope lurking under the surface.

It's hard having to explain to people where you're at in your cycle right now.
It's hard to be in a forced wait, when all you want to do is throw everything you have at this hurdle in front of you.
It's hard to have to explain why you're not excited anymore, or why you're finding it hard to relate to people around you.
It's hard to find people on similar journeys to you, and it's hard not to compare yours with theirs.
It's hard when you feel like a terrible friend because all you want to do is to protect yourself & get away from it all for a while.

So Facebook, Twitter, Instragram, with your excited TTC-ers, miraculous pregnancy announcements & beautiful babies, I think we need to steer clear of each other for just a little while longer, until I can build up my walls again to face the rest of the world. I'm a bit broken right now, but I'll be back.


We're somehow already halfway through a new month.. and I don't know how it happened, to be honest. At the rate this year is going, it'll be Christmas before we can blink.

So what have we been up to?

  • In cycle news, I finally got a bleed a few days ago after the egg retrieval stim/freeze all. It took almost a whole two weeks to arrive, but it was a doozy when it eventually got here. Now I'm back on the pill for a cycle to ensure my ovaries calm the hell down. Frustrating, but what can you do?
  • We've been outdoors! The weather has gone from Winter to Spring REALLY fast, and Georgia & I have been out with Spencer loads. She loves the backyard, it's hard to get her indoors again most days.
  • Hopefully planning a few days away. We are all pretty burnt out over here with all the stuff that's been going down... so hopefully, if work allows it, we'll go away for a few days and have a bit of a break.
  • Deliberating making our front room - currently a hardly used formal lounge - into a playroom for G. It'd mean a lot less clutter in the back room, and would give her a space to play in of her own. The downside? Getting rid of our lounges, figuring out a way to block off the staircase, and an Ikea trip for some storage cupboards for toys. This might end up being a bigger project than we thought..!
  • Partners in crime!

3 Effective Fat Burning Cardio Machines: Sponsored Post

I've been beyond slack with my training lately - after pushing myself with spin classes & weight training at the gym and not seeing results (thanks, IVF meds!) I just needed a break. It's about that time for me to jump back into my workouts - so today's sponsored post was a great reminder of how simple it is to get your body moving again. I have a love/hate relationship with my treadmill, but it's just one of many options to get active.


Put your hand up if you want to lose fat! Okay, now leave your hand up, because that will burn a few extra calories for you today. Are you looking for something a little more effective (and a lot less painful) than waving your hand in the air all day? Traditional cardio machines can help you get moving, burn fat and be on the way to a healthier version of yourself. Not sure where to start? Here are three popular machines to get you thinking.

1. Cross-trainer

The cross-trainer (or elliptical trainer) gives you a full-body workout every time. By working the arms and legs, as well as engaging your core, this machine will really get your heart rate up and your blood pumping. It’s super easy to do interval work by adjusting the resistance or your own speed, so you can vary your workouts. If you have any joint pain which is aggravated by the treadmill, the cross-trainer will generally be a great option as its smooth, circular motion removes the small amount of impact many people notice when walking. You don’t have to join a gym to get the benefits of this machine (or the others further down, either!) – check out sites like www.fitnessmarket.com.au to view a range of elliptical/cross-trainers that could be perfect for your home.

2. Rowing Machine

Competitive rowers are known for their incredible aerobic capacity, so why not follow in their footsteps? Rowing machines are often overlooked in traditional gym settings, but they can be hugely beneficial for fat loss and cardiovascular fitness. If you jump on to give it a go, make sure you use your legs, then your core, then your arms and finally squeeze your back in one smooth movement. Rowing is all in the technique, and jerky movements are inefficient. Keep it slow and steady for distance rowing, or push yourself and try doing 500 metres four times, as fast as you can, with a rest in between each effort. Rowing is also a great method of cross training if you play any team sport or do a lot of walking or running!

3. Treadmill

The treadmill has got to be the age-old solution for getting moving and burning fat. It lets you perform the very basic movements of walking and running at a convenient place and time – and these are movements we were built to perform! Not only is it easy to add variety to this cardio classic (you can choose pre-set workouts, vary the incline or change your speeds up), it’s also super easy to multitask if you’re just planning on doing a simple walk. You don’t have to have any fancy moves to get a good workout on a treadmill – keep it basic and you can be enjoying feeling fitter, firmer and more energetic!

Steady-state or interval cardio training can be effective methods for losing fat and feeling fit. Just don’t forget to combine your efforts with a nutrient-rich diet! Are you a fan of cardio machines? Is there one that you swear by? Share your favourite machine or workout below!
This sponsored post is in collaboration with Fitness Market - all images are my own. If you are interested in a product review or sponsored post content appearing on Breathe Gently, please email me.

An Embryo Update

Sorry for going quiet folks.. I've spent the last few days playing phone tag with my clinic to try and find out some more information about our new bunch of frosties.

So.. we had 8 embryos frozen at day 4. 4 were compacting morulas, 4 were early blastocysts.

No actual grading, they just had to make a fairly strict criteria for day 4, and all passed. There were no embryos left that they were watching - apparently there was a big divide between what was good/not good. The remaining discarded embryos were all significantly behind (2x 7-cell, 2x 6-cell, 8-cell, 9-cell, 15-cell with severe fragmentation) and wouldn't have caught up, so they were very happy with the 8 they did freeze.

The scientist I spoke to today was also the one who grew out our day 1's last time (who saw me sob hysterically through the transfer of our crappy last one left) and said compared to the embryos he had to work with last time, these looked way better. I'm trying to be positive that maybe future FET's won't have such poor results in the future as they have in the past. New clinic, new embryos, new chances.

Now I just have to wait for a period.. I'm still waiting, 10 days post egg retrieval -- and after that we can start our pill rest cycle.

8 Little Embryos

We found out today that we have eight embryos that were suitable for freezing.
Today is day 4, so I'm assuming they have frozen them as morulas. Because our clinic is closed on weekends, they unfortunately weren't able to grow and freeze them to blastocysts as we'd hoped. They've assured me that they've had good success spotting good embryos between days 4-5 to freeze and eventually thaw, but it still makes me nervous.
Let's face it.. ALL frozen cycles make me nervous!
That said... this is it for us again for a while - we're back at the waiting game again.
Waiting for a bleed, post egg pick-up & no transfer. Waiting for a pill cycle, and then another bleed. Waiting to start another HRT FET, hopefully in October if all goes well. Waiting to transfer one of those 8 embryos.
IVF stim #5, over & out.


It's one day past egg retrieval. I feel good.. scratch that - GREAT. This is quite possibly the best recovery I've had since starting IVF back in 2012. I went to bed sore, and woke up pumped. If I walk away with nothing from this new clinic, at least I've had a good run with healing.

I spoke to a doctor today from my new clinic, who understands my frustration with yet another freeze all - they get it, they understand, but they're standing by their decision. Their cut off is 20 follicles, and since I had 19 mature & still some left untouched during the retrieval, the risk is still too high.

So.. what now?

I wait for a period. Then go back on the pill. Then another period. And then another HRT FET cycle. More waiting! This whole thing feels never-ending sometimes. :(

On the bright side? Out of my 19 eggs, we had 15 fertilise overnight.

As most of us know, day 1 doesn't tell us much - and our history has shown we lose a lot between days 1-5. The test will be what survives to Friday to become morulas.. but hopefully we'll have some positive news and a few to freeze then.

Written as part of Microblog Mondays @ Stirrup Queens

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