I’ve read many blog entries reflecting on transfer day, but still, I can’t seem to find the words to describe how I’m feeling. It’s a bit surreal…
Two embryos are now nestled in their home for what hopefully turns out to be 9ish months. I’ve read lots of blogs reflecting on how close and connected women instantly feel to their embryos, even before they are transferred, but sadly, I don’t feel very connected. Is that a bad sign? I don’t physically feel any different from how I did last night, when our embryos were still making their home in a lab… And since I’ve never seen a positive pregnancy test, well, I guess maybe I’m just trying to protect myself from being hurt and disappointed later.
First though, a recap. We had 6 eggs retrieved last Friday and 4 fertilized normally on their own. The grading report for our 4 embryos is below. My clinic grades on a scale of 0-3 with 0 being excellent.
This morning we transferred 2 embryos, both 3 day transfers, one 6 cell graded 0.5, and the other a 7 cell graded 0.0. My doctor told me they rarely see 0.0 graded embryos, so both of mine transferred are stellar, but I’m wondering if he tells everyone that… Our embryos first pictures are below!
So remaining from our original 4 we have a 5 cell currently graded 1.0 which my doctor expects to continue to grow until day 5, Wednesday, at which point will be frozen for a transfer in the future. We expect this embryo to continue growing, but there are no guarantees, which is why two were transferred today. We will know in a few days how embryo #3 is doing.
Embryo #4 has only 2 cells as of day 3 and while all hope isn’t lost just yet, our doctor doesn’t expect #4 to live and continue to grow until day 5. I’m sad, but it’s certainly not uncommon for some embryos to drop out at each stage in this process.
Friday when I heard we only retrieved 6 eggs I was sad and disappointed, but honestly, now I’m more angry than anything. And I realize my doctors aren’t to blame, but that doesn’t make this any easier. All along I had many follicles, giving the impression we would have plenty to pick from for a 5 day transfer, and several to freeze. But obviously, that is not the case now. And if they could give me a reason, even if the reason was me, then I could understand this, but they obviously can’t. The science behind this phenomenal process is still just that, science. They don’t have all the answers, and as much as I research and review statistics, I still feel like this is just a numbers game, a crap shoot even. I’ll do my best to take care of these two embryos, but aside from that, I’m not sure there is really anything I can do, or my doctors, to make either of these two implant. Time will tell.
As far as the procedure this morning, it was quite simple. Eric and I were ushered into a similar prep/recovery room as we were Friday. They normally ask the husbands/partners to change into scrubs, but Eric had come from the OR, so he was already dressed and ready. I changed into your standard hospital gown and robe and my vitals were taken while the nurse reviewed my medical history, again.
Eric and I walked back to the procedure room with the nurse, I was covered with a warm blanket, and we were told the doctor and team would be in shortly. 25 minutes later… So one thing I must tell you, they ask that patients come with a full bladder for the transfer, something about placing the uterus in a better position for transfer. So, like a good patient, I drank a Sobe Life Water on my way to the hospital and while we were waiting for the doctor. My worst fear was peeing all over the doctor, which Eric found hilarious, as he’s been peed on more times than he can count over the years. In fact, while we were waiting, Eric wanted to use the ultrasound equipment in the room to scan my bladder to see its volume, but I protested of course, saying they will kick us out if we play with their equipment!
Finally the doctor walked in, along with his nurse and an ultrasound tech. If you’re ever had an IUI, or even a yearly exam, this transfer was similar. The ultrasound tech put some cool jelly on my belly so she could scan while the doctor was threading the small catheter into my uterus, making sure placement was correct. The doctor threaded one catheter as a trial run and then the embryos were transferred. We watched a flicker of light on the ultrasound monitor, and then it was over, that fast. The picture below was taken just as the embryos were transferred, the smaller, lighter line near the center of this picture. The huge black area at the top? Yeah, that’s my full bladder!
Tonight I will finish the antibiotic and steroid I’ve been taking since the retrieval, but my progesterone shots will continue, for how long, I’m not sure. I’m hoping I can switch to the progesterone suppositories after they confirm I’m pregnant… The actual shots aren’t really all that bad, but really, who wants a huge needle stabbed into their behind each night?? It’s more the after pain, the overall soreness when I sit, or move. Perhaps the very worst part of this entire process is the progesterone. Although having to pee today was a close second!
So 11 more days until my pregnancy test… How shall I pass the time???