We Have Passengers

Yesterday morning we did a 3dt (3-day transfer) of 3 embryos…which we affectionately call “The Passengers.”

Had to fill bladder and be there by 10….which of course guaranteed they’d be running behind….which they were. First thing we did was meet with the embryologist who showed us pictures of our new friends and explained what we were working with. Of the 3 that had fertilized all made it to transfer and were:

1-8cell Grade A

8Aembryo

1-8cell Grade B

8Bembryo

and one 6-7 cell Grade B.

6or7embryo

They look like freaky blobs, right? These pictures are mostly a curiosity to me….because I barely know what I’m looking at….but they’re fun to have. They were all fertilized with ICSI and had assisted hatching – we’re covering all the bases.

Anyway – remember my full bladder? I sure do. I finally got taken into the room got all comfy on the table – covered in a blanket, legs in stirrups, my business on full display to the world. There’s no glory to be found when you’re in that position. Then everyone assembled. There’s the nurse, the embryologist and the doc and I know that one of the worst things about the entire IVF process was about to take place: the nurse placed the ultrasound wand on my stomach…..and pressed. PRESSED! On my full bladder, which by the way, looked friggin HUGE on the monitor….enough that that nurse said, “Oh my.” Yeah, what do you expect – y’all were tardy.

The transfer went just fine – I got to watch on the monitor as the culture medium and our new friends made their way into their new house. The Russian told me that she felt like this cycle was the best of any of them and wished us the best.  I had to wait on the table for 15 minutes before I had the most glorious pee of my entire life (second only to the one following IVF1), got dressed and was sent on my way with instructions: take it easy, no caffeine/booze/smoking/drugs, and keep up the progesterone shots (which I started Wednesday night after the retrieval).

We went out to breakfast and then headed home to relax on the couch for the rest of the day.

And thus it began: IVF3’s 2 week wait.

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Triggers, Retrievals & Petri Dish Parties

Triggered Monday night with pregnyl at midnight and spent Tuesday needle-free. Glory be!

Yesterday morning we drove out to the Oak Brook office for the retrieval. We were due out there at 10:15, and I couldn’t eat or drink anything after midnight….so we stopped for bagels on the way out to have a snack ready to nosh.  If 2 IVFs have taught me anything, it’s that I’m gonna be friggin hungry once they give me the green light to eat post anesthesia. The clinic gives me some ginger ale and animal crackers post retrieval while the rest of the IV gets me hydrated, but that just takes the edge off.  Since there’s already going to be grogginess and crampiness in play, why put some food crankies in there as well? Plan ahead: have snacks at the ready.

Oh, one thing that was different this time – I got a second shot of pregnyl about 20-30 minutes before the retrieval. My RE wanted to use this as it may help with egg quality. It’s one more shot….at this point I just lift up my gown and bend over.

As I’m now recognized by the staff, there was a pretty relaxed atmosphere with me and a general silliness. The guy putting in my IV, my husband and I ended up coming up with a pretty good idea for a children’s book based on someone called Lumpy Bumpy and the woman trying to take my temp and blood pressure kept saying my fingers were way too cold….which led to questions of just how cold: “mortuary cold?”….”zombie cold?”   The Russian popped her head in and said she felt pretty good about the cycle and that it was time to get going.

I got in the room, we went over making sure it was me in the room and then I took a snooze.

I woke up in the chair back in the prep/recovery area.  My husband told me that The Russian had come in to say that they’d gotten 5 eggs. 5. We’d all hoped for more…..The Russian thought there’d be more. But we got 5, which is better than none.

Interesting point of coincidence: last night we also attended an open house at another adoption agency here in Chicago (couldn’t go in November, didn’t want to wait until January) so I like to think the universe is telling us: somehow folks….one way or another….this is going to work out for you guys.

Which leads us to today and the fertilization report – which I like to think comes after a night of petri dish partying: some sexy culture medium, an egg, a sperm, some romantic lighting, a glass of bubbly, a little Barry White…. Of the 5 eggs, 3 were mature and all three fertilized (we also had ICSI working for us, so no doubt that helped). Would I have liked all 5 to have fertilized? Sure. However, given my track record and age, I didn’t really think that was realistic, so I’m very happy with 3.

Now we wait to hear from The Russian (who will be talking to the embryologist sometime today) and she’ll let us know if we’re looking at a 3day (Saturday) or a 5day(Monday) transfer.

Two things I like/find intriguing:

1) Yesterday, the date was 11/12/13 (if you follow the European: date/month/year method…which for these purposes I will) – that’s as cool a day as any to have your petri dish party (and really, knowing the actual date of conception is at least one cool thing we get with IVF, right?).

And,

2) Our 2ww will end on…..Christmas Day.

So…..here’s hoping for a Christmas miracle!

Trigger, Harvest and Fertilization

So let me take you back a few days.

Ultrasounds last week were showing very slow progress and as of Thursday the doctor wanted to give the follicles a few more days (which meant ordering more Menopur for overnight delivery).  Following Friday’s ultrasound, which showed a 22 and a bunch of other follicles in the mid-teens, they still figured I’d go another night….maybe sacrificing the lead follicle in hopes of getting a number of the ones that were in their mid-teens to catch up and mature.

But, blood tests showed that my progesterone was starting to rise, which according to The Russian’s Right Hand, indicated that the body was saying, “the time’s come….stop messing with me.”  (she only said “the time’s come” part…..but I think the “stop messing with me” was very much implied).

So we ended up triggering Friday night.

That Menopur I ordered….now sitting in my closet.  Poop.

Sunday morning we went in at 8am for ER (egg retrieval) – we sat awhile….they were uncharacteristically slow with information as to what was going on and when we’d go in…..so that was a little frustrating.  I mean, at a certain point you’re gowned up, the I.V.’s in and you’re ready to go. Had a different nurse in the room than last time….she seemed to be having…..not her best day.  There was just alot of firmly moving me around and grumbling at me when I wasn’t sitting/standing/leaning/putting my leg exactly as she wanted.

Luckily the aesthetician kept being jokey jokey so I just focussed on him.

They confirmed my identity, the doc came in and then I was out.

And then I was awake. We only got 5 eggs. Clearly not what we’d hoped for, but better than nothing….especially given that by Friday night’s trigger when I thought the doc actually wanted more time, I was kind of wondering if there was ANYTHING in there to work with.

The same nurse who was not on her best day came in with the above news and kept saying, “when and if there’s a transfer.” I mean, she must have said it 3-4 times.  Does she not realize that one of us is just coming out of anesthesia to the news that she only made 5 eggs and SHE IS FUCKING FRAGILE?!?!  Lie to me a little, or at least choose your words, and for Pete’s sake, stop saying IF!

Horsed down a potato bagel with cream cheese and jam on the drive home and crashed out hard on the couch for the rest of the afternoon.  Randomly watched a mess of Frasier Season 1 on Netflix once I came to….and then of course waited around for the Breaking Bad finale.  Though, I also found Season 4, Episode 2 of Downton Abbey which has now started in the U.K. – there’s no friggin way I can wait until January when it’ll air here in the States.

So now it’s today and I was waiting and waiting to hear the fertilization report. I even cleaned the refrigerator to kill time. Finally got the call that of the 5, 3 were mature and 2 fertilized….so now we wait some more to see what happens with them and if we’ve got something to transfer. (Thanks nurse for planting the “When And If” seed).  The nurse told me that the doc would be in later today and perhaps she’d make a decision already this afternoon or tomorrow at the latest.

We keep telling ourself that it only takes one.

Though shit, it would’ve been nice to have a bazillion options!

We just need one scrappy enough to keep dividing, make the transfer, get in there and HANG THE FUCK ON!!!!

Hopefully we’ll hear something soon…..but for now:

DIVIDE LITTLE CELLS!!!  DIVIDE!!!!!