The Lowdown

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Yes, that is a bona fide pic of our embryo! We did transfer yesterday. At the last minute DH and I decided to forgo PGD. We didn’t feel it was necessary in our circumstances. Because we made this decision we were given a 5-day transfer instead of a 6-day.

We got to the clinic bright and early at 7:15 a.m. I had blood work drawn and then we were escorted to the surgical area to change. DH got a smock, hairnet, and shoe covers; I got the standard too-short gown, slipper socks, and a hairnet. We looked so hot in our getup. I gotta say, it was comforting to have company for once. I had showered the evening before and put on no lotions, creams, etc. whose scents might interfere with the transfer. In fact, I went sans deodorant too just to be super safe (I just bought a new deodorant that I haven’t gone nose blind to yet). So yeah, like I said, hot stuff.

Before transfer, the embryologist met with us about the results of our embies. She came armed with a printout of the embryo that’d be transferred momentarily. Truly this was a perfect, beautiful, hatching, grade 5AA embryo. The embryologist—a sweet woman who spoke in lots of scientific terms—espoused the virtues of our transferee by showing us spots and specks and curves on the printed picture that DH and I didn’t understand, but her excitement was so sweet that we truly did try to process it all. I really appreciated her enthusiasm.

Then she dropped the bomb that only one embryo—a grade 5BB—was leftover to go in the freezer. Technically, there were two embryos to potentially freeze, but the embryologist wasn’t holding out for both of them to make it. (I found out this morning that indeed the second lil fighter did not make it, and ended its life as a 5-celled grade 3DE. Or maybe DF. I forget.)

So, 1 frozen embryo + 1 fresh embryo = 2. Out of 9. Mathematically, only 22% of our embryos survived. The lab thought we’d get at least 40% to survive. And out of the 13 eggs retrieved, only 15% made it to viable embryos. Those are not the kinds of numbers anyone wants to hear.   Then again…. we could’ve ended up with none to freeze at all. The two that made it are so special to me and I thank God for providing them. Yet I can’t help being sad and upset about the seven we lost. I of course started crying the minute the embryologist left DH and I alone behind our curtained area. And this morning after receiving the news that only one was left to freeze, I began crying again on my drive to work, ruining my perfectly good eye makeup. I hope this sadness gets better with time.

I truly struggled with this outcome. Part of me is of course undeniably grateful for our two embryos that did make it, grateful for this opportunity, grateful that it wasn’t worse. Yet another part of me is heartbroken for the seven embryos that didn’t make it. I don’t know how to feel. I go back and forth, up and down, left and right. If I start getting sad or worried then I kick myself, because surely those emotions are sending bad/draining/negative bodily vibes through to my lil blastocyst and maybe that will affect its implantation. So, what, am I not supposed to feel any amount of sadness because of this possibility? It’s a vicious cycle. Being on estrogen is not helping matters, since it seems to affect my emotional state the worst of any of the hormones I’ve stuffed into my body lately.

The transfer itself went smoothly. I had creepy Nurse Pam hovering over me again, but her chilling presence was buffeted by the return of Dr. G, who had performed my hysto and mock transfer! Aside from my regular RE, Dr. G is my fave doctor in the whole group. I was super happy to know she’d be doing our transfer. The lab is adjacent to the surgery room, so a door was opened up between the rooms so DH and I could see everything that was happening. The lab seemed like a happy place—it was brightly lit and they had music going. What a cool place that must be to work at.

DH and I got to watch on a TV screen as the embryologist in the lab took the embryo from its petri dish and basically sucked it into a catheter. She then carried it through the doorway into the surgery room. At this point I was already on the table with the speculum in. The catheter was inserted to the very tip of my uterus and the blastocyst placed. Quick. Easy. I laid there for less than ten minutes before they discharged us to leave. I spent the remainder of the day on bedrest, only getting up to use the bathroom or get something to eat. Today I am back to work.

Since we did a day-5 transfer, our TWW is actually a 9-day wait. October 1 I will have a blood pregnancy test done at the clinic. I’m so grateful we don’t have to wait an extra five days to find out the results. I really don’t see myself POAS between now and then. Among the lovely side effects of the Crinone that I’ve been taking for the last six days, constant cramping and ridiculous boob pain/swelling/lumpiness (They lie and call it mere “breast tenderness” on the informational insert from the pharmacy. Not.even.close) have been plaguing me on a daily basis. Because of that, there’s little else to “look for” as far as possible pregnancy symptoms go. Symptom counting has never been my thing anyway. Just gotta ride this thing out.

Peace 🙂

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