FET Audience

Since we have 4 frozen normal embryos, we are leaning towards attempting a frozen embryo transfer soon.  I don’t have much confidence that I can carry a baby to full-term, so I suspect the FET process is something I will not highlight online (at this blog, or on the various forums where I participate) at all.     It is very painful to lose a baby and I believe that hurt is amplified after IVF and the transfer of a PGS normal embryo.

I know this blog is a resource for so many women looking for answers, so please try to understand It was painfully hard for me lose my baby in front of a virtual audience in 2012. I will however, list the proposed immune protocol from my doctors when it is finalized.

IVF #7

IVF #7 started yesterday with Lupron.

I received an actual calendar with my medications and dates on it (6 IVFs behind me, and this is the first time I’ve received a calendar) and my protocol is extremely different than anything we’ve tried before.

Different, in our case is good. Change is good here. And hey, it can’t be worse than 3 cycles where the outcome is 0 embryos.

However, we have very realistic expectations as to the outcome of this cycle. If, by chance, there are any blasts on day 5 or 6, we will be having 24 chromosome genetic screening done on them via Natera in California.

I’ve received oh so many medication boxes in the past 4 years, and was surprised to see the 14 pre-filled syringes of Ganirelix that arrived at my house for this cycle.  I guess I should be grateful this Ganirelix heavy cycle did not take place 2 years ago when there was a shortage of this particular medication.

I have kept fairly detailed accounts of my prior 6 IVFs (dosages, estrogen, follicles and the like), so I am curious how my body will respond to this new medication protocol.

For those of you who are geekily interested, here is approximate overview of my meds calendar:
Days 1-8 – Lupin
Day 9-12 – Ganirelix in the AM
Day 13-16 – Ganirelix in the AM.  225 Follistim and 1 vial of Menopur in the PM.  60mg Lovenox.
Day 17-22 – Ganirelix in the Am.  225 Follistim in the PM. 60mg Lovonox.
Day 23 – HCG Trigger
Day 24 – HCG Trigger
Day 25 – ER

Well Hello, Lupron

6 IVFs since 2011 and I’ve never tried Lupron.  Times are a changin’ as it’s now on deck for IVF #7.  As is a completely new protocol.  And a new doctor.  At a new clinic.

The worst that can happen is we get 0 blasts again, but let’s be honest here, we are very experienced in cycles that result in 0 blasts.

After reviewing our history (it’s a novel really) and sitting with our new doctor, he didn’t pull any punches.  He said we have issues from all sides of the infertility spectrum and we cannot realistically expect high blast counts.

This was not news to us, but I am glad he didn’t try to sell us the world.

He also said he’s seen many couples like us, and he was genuinely surprised we didn’t look more defeated.    I told him if he had seen me after my miscarriage, he would of felt differently,

Prior to IVF #7 in March, we are going to take a quick, cheap vacation.    I am exhausted.

From Within My Bunker

Over the weekend, my mother joked that I had “hunkered down in my bunker” and she was right.   I didn’t relate the details of our shitty IVF cycle to many people.  I just felt so defeated.  We only got 6 eggs.   If you know our history (see sidebar), with only 1 embryo to show for it, we felt sure we would lose the numbers game again, and end up with no blasts.

This morning we were evacuated from our home due to a major gas line break.  In fact, a two block radius of stores, apartments, and homes were evacuated. I was sleeping when the fire department came knocking at our door.  You see, I was up all night worrying about 0 blasts again.  I  finally fell asleep around 6am.  The fire department showed up at 7:30am

We packed up the important parts of our lives (including 2 angry cats) and exited within 10 minutes.  I find it amusing that I forgot my jewelry and makeup, but packed our passports and my brand spanking new MACBOOK.  I guess that means, when push comes to shove, perhaps I am not a vapid bitch?

Anyhoo..  I was forced to spend the morning at my in-laws.   They are really lovely people. But I wanted to field the 9am phone call from my doctor stating “all your embryos died” alone.  I wanted to cry, alone.    I honestly felt I had earned this tiny little perk of facing my hurt, fears, and shame, alone.

No call came at 9am.  Then, no call came at 10am.   I had been (calmly) fine for the prior 5 days, but once 9am arrived, I was a complete wreck and still sitting on my in-laws couch. Two amazing friends quickly assured me that passing 9am mark was good news, because our clinic gives biopsy reports between 11am and 1pm, not bad news.   Nonetheless, my abused heart thought “my doctor is just delaying the inevitable, difficult conversation.” Dramatic, perhaps?  But I have suffered so much, and I have not been able to keep a positive headspace at all.  Zero embryos will do that to a girl.

At exactly 11am I received a call from my doctor.  From her car.  On her day off. Incidentally, I now have her cell phone number (which I promised I would burn).  She was animated and excited.   We froze 2 very good blasts. TWO.   While I am sure some of you aren’t impressed, we are fan-fucking-tastically impressed.   Two. Strong. Blasts. Frozen.

So with only 5 fertilized eggs, this cycle, from all angles, looked like a complete bust.  In fact,  on the day of the trigger, we debated canceling.

Yet, this was, in fact, our best cycle yet. (so far)

I have pondered why this cycle was better.  Was it the acupuncture?  Was it the supplements?  Was it the human growth hormone?  Was it the swap from HCG to Menopur?  Who knows?  I will just say it was a combo of all of the above.

And now, we wait 2-3 weeks for the 24 chromosome testing results.