Friday, January 27, 2012

Better than I could have imagined

That is how this whole cycle has been. I never would have imagined I would be as confident as I am right now.

Tuesday afternoon we transferred two beautiful blasts. And those were the words used by Dr. P, beautiful! The best part is we had two blasts that also made it to freeze. We have never had frozen embryos before, and I am excited to think there may be a chance after this cycle for more hope.

I barely slept Monday night, I kept waking up every hour thinking I was going to miss the call with what time we were supposed to be at the office. Finally around 6am I decided to screw it and get up for the day.

After 4 hours of staring at my phone the nurse called at 10am (literally as I was picking up to call them) and told us to be there by 2:30 for transfer. She didn't have the info on our embryos at the point so I had to wait 4.5 more hours to see how they were doing.

The nurse told me to drink 16 ounces of water when we got close to the office. Once we got to the office they checked us in and I got dressed in the ever glamorous hospital gown. We were taken back to the procedure room around 2:45 and they checked my bladder on ultrasound to make sure it was full enough. Unfortunately it wasn't so I had to sit in the transfer room pounding cups of water for about 45 minutes.

While waiting for my stupid bladder to fill up we got to have a great conversation with the embryologists. They were two of the nicest ladies ever. Christina and Erica came out and asked if we had thought about how many we were going to transfer, I responded "depends on how many we have left." Christina informed us we had four, three were grade 1 and one was grade 2! Then she left for a couple minutes and came back with her cell phone where she had taken pictures of the embryos. They were very excited about something one of our embryos was doing.
Here they are:


It isn't a great picture because it was taken off the screen of the microscope, but I will try and explain what they are so excited about. On the embryo on the left you can see a clump of cells kinda in the middle and to the right, that is the group of cells that will (hopefully) eventually turn into a baby, the cells kinda of lining the outside of the embryo will turn into the placenta. On the embryo to the right if you look in the bottom left and top right sections you can see there are two of those clumps of cells that could possibly turn into babies. This isn't a guarantee that the embryo will split into identical twins, but apparently the theory is that seeing that increases the chances of identical twins by 19%. The embryologists said the last lady they saw this with did end up getting pregnant with identical twins. The crazy part is that if they had looked a half hour earlier or later they might not have seen the two groups of cells. That is just how fast development of the embryos happens.

In the end we transferred the two embryos in the picture. The transfer was awesome. We could see the ultrasound screen the whole time. Dr. Peters pointed out where my uterus was, the catheter as they put it in, and the the little white spot the popped up why the transferred the embryos. We even got print outs with pictures of the embryos being transferred in. I really need scan them in and post them. IF these puppies stick they are going to have one heck of a baby book.

So now we wait. The first blood test will be the 3rd, and if that comes back positive the second will be on the 6th. As a side note, my birthday is the 8th, so this will either be the best birthday ever, or it will kinda suck.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Cycle Update

This cycle has gone better than I ever could have imagined. I am so, so happy I decided to go with SIRM and Dr. Peters. I haven't posted anything since the baseline so let me catch you up:

- I did 8 days of stims. Last week was a little rough because I had to drive to Jersey and back three times. But it was totally worth it. I am impressed that the Doctor does all the ultrasounds to check on follicles himself. He was great about explaining everything to Garry and tell us how big each one was. The two follie checks I had at SIRM were the best I have ever had.

- At the egg retrieval on Thursday they got 11 eggs! (as a reminder I got 4 eggs on IVF #1 and 10 on IVF #2.

- Of the 11 eggs 8 were mature, that is amazing for me! IVF #1 only 1 of the four were mature, and IVF #2 only have four mature eggs. I guess we found the right mix of drugs to get the best results out of my crappy ovaries.

Today is day 3 and I just got the call from Dr. Peters with our update. We have four 7 cell embryos growing today! SIRM has a grading scale from 1 to 3 with 1 being the best and 3 being the worst. Three of our embryos are grade 1 (yay!) and one is a grade 2!

We talked about doing the CGH genetic testing, and since we only have four embryos we decided to skip it. Dr. Peters explained that with three or four embryos it is not worth the cost because more than likely at least one or two of those will arrest by day 5.

So the plan from here is the embryos will continue growing until day 5 If all four embryos make it to Day 5 than we will transfer the best two and wait to see if the other two make it to freeze. If we have three left on day 5 then Dr. Peters, Garry and I will have a serious discussion about whether or not to transfer all three. The idea of triplets scares the ever living crap out of me. I think we could handle twins, and I am sure we would figure out how to handle triplets, but the idea of being out numbered by babies is really scary. I know the odds of all three implanting in me are slim, but there is still a chance.

I feel great about this cycle. Even if it doesn't work and we don't get pregnant I know that we tried everything, got great care from SIRM, and there was nothing else we could do. But I gotta admit, I am feeling very hopeful today.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Baseline Appointment

I had my baseline today, and it actually went better than expected. My E2 level was a little higher than I would have liked, but not too bad considering my diagnosis. It is supposed to be between 25-75, the higher the number typically the harder you are to stim. I came in at 63.

My ultrasound was pretty painful. If you have been following my story you know that the techs can have a hard time finding my ovaries, especially my left. No different this time. The right was fairly easy, and it had 5 antral follicles (or resting follicles), which is really good for me. The left one was being a little bitch though. Hiding right behind a loop of bowel. The tech was poking and prodding and pushing at my stomach all at the same time. And I had really bad cramps at the time. But she eventually got a peek and thought she saw 5 antral follicles there too. Ten Antral Follicles! That is more than I have ever had! The good luck bracelet my friend gave me yesterday must be working!

So I got the go ahead from my nurse to start stims. I jumped right in tonight with 675iu Gonal F. I go back Thursday morning for the first follicle check, and then next Monday I will start driving down to New Jersey for my appointments. I am exhausted just thinking about the next few weeks.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Hello Old Friends

I haven't posted in a very long time, mostly because I have been incredibly busy. I got a promotion at work, I was helping my sister plan and execute her wedding, we got a new puppy, and that is just to name a few things. I will catch you up on all that in a little bit.

In just a couple minutes I will be heading out the door for my baseline ultrasound and bloodwork, so here I am again. There is a pile of meds on our Booze Bar, I have my bases covered at work for the hand full of days I will need off for the cycle, and I have a healthy level of optimism, hope, and nerves brewing inside of me.

There are so many things we are doing differently with this cycle... going on blood thinners (which really sting by the way) for the immune problems that we discovered in all my bloodwork, I am going to be on a lot more hormones this time around, and we will be doing genetic testing on the embryos as well. I really hope that all of these things will bring us our success, but I am not counting on it. I have come to terms with the fact that I may not ever be pregnant. I am ok with it, because I know that Garry and I will be parents, it may take a few years for adoption to come through for us, but I am confident that at some point we will be parents. That knowledge has taken the pressure off of me, which is a nice feeling.

That brings me to a decision I recently made. At the end of this cycle our journey to have a baby will be over. Either it will end with me finally getting pregnant, or it will end with the road to adoption beginning. Either way I have decided that this blog will be ending with my infertility journey. I went back and read through the whole blog the other day. I cried a lot. There are so many things in here that I want to put behind me at the end of all of this. I might start fresh with a new blog about whatever the next journey is, we'll see. For now I am concentrating on making it through this last IVF with my sanity intact. Ok, off to meet with my old friend the dildo cam!