IVF Round 1

We had an amazing summer 2013. When I had my last ectopic and surgery in January, we knew that was the end of trying naturally and I just didn’t want to think about it until fall. September turned into October, and it took every ounce of energy to even call and make a consultation appointment at the fertility clinics that Dr. B referred us to. 

Once I finally made the step to do some research online, then I had to fill out pre-appointment paperwork and I HATED IT. I stared at the folder of forms when I got home every night and just pushed it under the coffee table. Then I would only do a page at a time, because reliving the past 2 1/2 years on paper gave me a headache and anxiety. When the form only had 4 fields for “previous pregnancies” and I had 5 failed pregnancy stories, I just cried as I added another line.

Finally I finished them, and I had two consultations appointments scheduled at different clinics for 10/14 and 10/21. I was so nervous for our first appointment, at Fertility Specialists Medical Group, which I was told would be about 2 hours. We got there and as I was signing in, I realized I forgot that f’ing folder with all of the dreaded paperwork in it! I almost started crying right there at the front desk and we had been there for 2 minutes. Andy could tell I was about to lose it, and he got me right through it. I think the front desk girl could tell too because she didn’t make me fill them out again. 

The office is as warm and cozy as a doctor’s office can be, and we were waiting in a private room until Dr. Shelly came in. She already had most of my medical records that the office had obtained after I scheduled the appointment, and the first thing she said was that she was so sorry we had been through what we have and that it was awful. It was just a nice acknowledgement, because it IS awful and as awful as it is, sometimes it’s even more comforting to hear out loud since I think it’s awkward to be so frank about it in front of people. She handed me a box of tissues just in case, and we walked through our history. We also spent some time talking about the process and possible timeline. At that point, I really didn’t want to wait any longer and we felt very comfortable. So with where I was in my cycle, we just decided to go for it. I had to get an ultrasound, meet with the financial counselors, and then we made the next appointment for 2 days later. I canceled our appointment at the second place, took a deep breath, and got ready for the next phase of our life.

I feel like I was taking an AP bio class, with hours of information overload, a 3-ring binder, and appointments every other day for weeks. I won’t go through all the meds I took over the course of 6 weeks, but the pills I took the first 2 weeks made me a little crazy. I felt a bit nauseous, emotional, my boobs hurt, and no food sounded appetizing. 

On 10/29 the appointment to go over the shots was so overwhelming! I am actually totally fine with needles, and I can see that the fear of would add another whole layer of emotion to this process. But to hear about the doses, number of shots, the fact that you have to mix and measure, the cost, etc. was so intense.
I decided to give up on Halloween because it just sounded like too much to deal with. No money and no time to worry about a costume with all this going on, which was a real bummer since I love Halloween and everyone goes all out at work. I got a picture from two of my friends/co-workers – our department was all going as Apps and they had made me a SnapChat shirt for my costume and were bringing it to work for me the next day. This is just one tiny instance that shows what amazing friends and support we have at our office.

I had another appointment on 10/31, and the FSMG staff was dressed as Care Bears for Halloween. I had a sonohysterogram (SHG) test, and I really thought this would be routine. It’s an easy test, and the purpose is to find any abnormalities in the uterus. The screen looked like an eclipse, and Dr. Shelly informed me there was definitely a mass in my uterus that shouldn’t be there. I was stunned when she told me I would have to have surgery, and she would set it up with Dr. B. It wasn’t going to hold up the first part of the process, but I would need to schedule it while our embryos were frozen and wait a month before they transferred them back in. I had a breakdown in the car in the parking lot on the phone with my sister. I almost just went home for the rest of the day, but I went into the office and the rest of the day was so fun with all the Halloween festivities.

SHOTS SHOTS SHOTS… I gave myself 28 altogether. I recommend an ice pack on your stomach for a few minutes before injecting. And blood draws every other day. A week later, my tests were lower on estrogen than what she wanted and my follicles were not looking as good as expected. Thankfully they looked to be catching up on the next appointment. I finally got to take my "Trigger Shot" on 11/13.
  • Day 0: 11/15 - Egg Retrieval Surgery. They retrieved 5 eggs, which is less than expected or desired.
  • Day 1: Hanging on with 4
  • Day 3: Still 4, but some not maturing
  • Day 5: Down to 2, but they wanted to wait one more day to see if they made it to blastocyst phase
  • Day 6: 1 left. This is statistically very disappointing, and it is recommended that we consider another round so we have more in the pool to send to through chromosomal testing. 
As of now, we have 1 little blastocyst frozen. I had surgery to remove a uterine fibroid the week of Thanksgiving, and now we are going to start IVF Round 2.

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