I’ve been staring at this empty page for what feels like ages. I’m just not sure what to say. Our retrieval has been scheduled and I’m feeling entirely unprepared.
We went in for an ultrasound and blood draw on Sunday morning. At last count, I’ve got roughly 30 follicles, roughly half of which were at about 12-14 mm. The others were all under 10 mm. At that point, the nurses weren’t quite sure whether they would try to bring me in for one more ultrasound or if they were going to schedule the trigger shot. Sunday afternoon we received a call letting us know it was time. We would do one more stimulation shot, two more follicle maturing shots and 3 more anti-ovulation shots. The HCG and the Lupron trigger shot (designed to keep my ovaries from hyper stimulation – common in women with PCOS) were scheduled for 10:30 p.m. on Memorial Day, with the retrieval scheduled for exactly 36 hours later, at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday.
If it seems to you that things are progressing a lot faster this time around, that’s because they are. We had 12 days between our first shot and egg retrieval on our last cycle. This time it was only 9. I don’t honestly know if that’s a good or a bad thing. It just is what it is, I guess. What I do know, is that everything seems different this time. I don’t remember feeling bloated and achy last time, until the day of the retrieval. This time, I feel like the fricken Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. I haven’t gained any weight during this cycle. If anything, I’ve dropped a couple of pounds, but I’m so bloated that I feel as though I look like I could already be pregnant. I also don’t remember being this sad. I’m sure it’s mostly hormonal, but I can’t seem to shake it. Most days have been fine, but the last couple have been pretty terrible. And I can’t quite figure out why. Maybe because I have no choice but to be ready before I truly feel ready.
That’s all I know for now. Our transfer date won’t be determined until after the retrieval and will be contingent upon how many eggs successfully fertilize. At this point, we know it will either be Saturday or Monday. I’m desperately hoping that we have better luck with that this time. If you remember our last retrieval they took 26 eggs. One of their technicians even mentioned that she’d never seen so many eggs get collected at one time. That left me feeling pretty amazing. Sore as fuck, but incredibly proud of what my body was capable of. Of the 26 eggs, 19 were considered normal. Again, great news and higher than average numbers. Of those 19, 12 fertilized normally. Lee and I were overjoyed at the these facts, feeling pretty confident that we would be an IVF success story. And yet, none of those 12 ended up being viable embryos. I honestly don’t know if I’m strong enough to endure that kind of pain again. And I don’t know that I’m ready to find out. But I don’t really have a choice anymore, do I?
I’m going to go underground again for a bit. Call it self-preservation, if you will. To those of you that have followed along through our journey, thank you. To those that have felt compelled to reach out, just to let us know you’re hoping for the best for us, I can’t even begin to describe what your thoughts and kindness have meant. Know that I’ll be carrying those thoughts with me tomorrow, all the way through our transfer, up to our pregnancy test, and beyond. I hope this story finally gives us the happy ending (beginning, really) that we’ve been hoping for.