Another early morning to rise and be at the doctor’s office before 7… a day in the life of an IVF patient. 😉
At this point, I, the human pincushion, have been through 11 days of STIMS (2 injections a night to stimulate multiple follicle growth) and 4 days of antagonist injections (1 in the morning to stop ovulation of said follicles until they’re, um, primed). The beginning growth was slow but steady. And while my follicle count and size had been pretty conservative in the last week, I’m told everything looks really good. Doc ramped up my dosage earlier this week, and boy can I feel a difference!
Yesterday’s labs, (bloodwork and scans) show a good number of similarly sized follicles (they were thrilled about this). So, another early appointment this morning for monitoring, BUT, if it shows what he thinks – I should be administering my “trigger” shot TONIGHT for my egg retrieval surgery on Saturday! SATURDAY!
Here’s when we start to think numbers.
I’m not going to lie. When my beginning follicle count was at 12, I was a little down in the dumps. I keep hearing about counts in the twenties, and my 12 felt depressing. But as more and more people in my support group reminded me “Quality over Quantity”, I started to feel better. I’m now up to 15.
A little fertility health lesson for you. Ya see… of those follicles, not all are guaranteed to have eggs. We can hope and pray, but it’s an average of about 60-70%, bringing us down to (hopefully, at least) 10. Of the eggs retrieved, about 70% will be mature; down to 7. And of those, about 75-80% will be fertilized successfully – leaving us with 5. From there, it’s a 5-day waiting game as we see how many make it to the blastocyst stage and ready for transfer or freezing. My hope through all of this is that this cycle leaves us with multiple embryos so we can transfer now AND save for a later date (if unsuccessful and/or when we want to expand our family in the future).
This article on my clinic’s site was very informative if you wanted to read more. And no, I’m really not thinking negatively… just realistic. This process is exciting and terrifying, and after all we’ve been through over the last few years, it’s super important to keep our heads up – but on straight.
So, please join me in a collective prayer for a smooth procedure, easy recovery and good quality eggs. Here comes the scary part and the not knowing what they’re going to find.
In closing, timing is everything. I can’t help but smile at the thought that this retrieval date (i.e. day of our baby’s conception, God willing) will be just days before the 16 year anniversary of losing my grandmother. I know she’s with me all the time, but I just relish in seeing these signs that she’s watching over us, just as anxious for us to be parents.
It’s no secret to anyone who knows me what an impact my grandmother had on my life. It’s also no secret that someday, somehow – my daughter would carry on the name Theresa to honor our relationship. I can only hope and pray that I will be blessed to have that opportunity.
I can only say THANK YOU for your continued support, it truly means the world to both of us. Your continued prayers and/or good thoughts are so welcomed as we continue this journey. xo