So I’ve skipped a lot of stuff, this not blogging since February 21. This is not the way one runs a successful blog. I’d apologize, but I’m not sure anyone really felt a loss at not being able to read my ramblings. My last post was just after retrieval, and I discussed in detail how my clumsiness led to many of boys dying a nondescript death on the carpet of the sample production room. I couldn’t write after the transfer, I couldn’t write during the 9 day wait…and after we got the BFN….it was a true body blow. IVF #3 was our last fresh cycle on our shared risk program, and we only froze one embryo (the only we’d ever gotten to freeze) during this last cycle. It seemed as if IVF was not going to work for us.
So we went off the Twitter/Blog grid. We tried to not make IF the center of our lives. I’m not really sure we succeeded, but we stopped tweeting and blogging under our pseudonyms and just were ourselves. We got a new dog, Molly (by the way – I can’t believe we won the dog jackpot twice. She is an unbelievably great dog, a 2 year old puggle). We went to the Midwest RESOLVE Conference in Minneapolis, a day of discussion around different ways to build a family. We wanted to learn a bit about the options….but we really weren’t ready to put a lot of thought, time and effort into those options yet. We knew that, because of our shared risk program, we pretty much had to go through with the FET cycle, with our one egg. HopeToBeMommy became accustomed to calling it GoodEgg. We froze just the one against the wishes of our doctor, who felt our odds wouldn’t be high enough with just one Level 2 blastocyst in an FET. We had agreed in the previous two cycles in similar situations, but for some reason in this last fresh cycle, we balked and decided we would freeze it. Maybe because we wanted a backup plan…but HopeToBeMommy started saying on that day that we froze it because it was “a good egg”. She said she had a feeling about it.
So, despite not being totally into it, we started prepping for our frozen cycle back in April. In May we started the FET protocol. We felt this was easier….we still had the Lupron shots and other meds, but she didn’t have to grow anything. We liked that.
Then it was transfer day…and we were terrified. We were told ahead of time that a significant number of embroys don’t thaw out right and die, but we wouldn’t know until the morning of transfer. We simply prayed for the opportunity to try one more time. We left for the clinic, me nervous and HopeToBeMommy drugged up and artificially relaxed…and we arrived to hear we would be transferring GoodEgg. I cried a couple silent, thankful tears and got HTBM ready for transfer.
Things were different this time. Our normal doctors, who routinely had no idea who we were (and didn’t seem to want to know either) weren’t there on this day. Instead, for the first time throughout the process, we met Dr. Colleen Casey. She was, without a doubt, the most friendly and engaged doctor we have encountered throughout this whole process, across any clinic we have been at. She had the least trouble navigating through my most favorite curved uterus in the entire world. Our nurse hung with us quite a bit while HTBM laid down for 30 minutes under her Bair Hugger blanket (probably her favorite thing in the world, a blanket with forced warm air being constantly run through it). She was so nice and so friendly, and as we were getting ready to leave she said “I don’t remember everyone who goes through this, and I don’t always get to find out the end result for couples, but I’m going to remember you two. I hope I can find out if this works for you.” It was so nice to hear, and it was the first time that we felt we had a nurse and a doctor who truly cared about our success.
And so we waited. HTBM was feeling some nausea at times, but we had no idea if it was pregnancy or nightly shots of progesterone in the butt (by the way, I’m really, really good at giving my wife a shot in the ass now – I consider it a skill of mine). Then last Saturday night, I was doing some work for my day job and ended up working until 1:45 AM to finish it. I figured I could sleep in on Sunday, and her blood test was scheduled for Monday. I fell asleep quickly.
The next thing I am aware of, I hear rapid footsteps and my dog’s collar in my bedroom. I slowly roll over to find my wife with a gift bag in hand. She says “Molly and I have a father’s day gift for you.” I think to myself sarcastically ‘Sure, I’m on 5 hours of sleep here, why shouldn’t this wait?’ I indulge my wife by reaching into the bag and finding a small item inside tissue paper. I feel it for a couple seconds and have no idea what my gift is. I unwrap the tissue paper to find a home pregnancy test stick. At this point I furrow my brow and inform HTBM that I didn’t have my glasses on and it was dark, I couldn’t read it. Which is funny, because if I wasn’t half asleep, I’d realize that no woman going through a 4th IVF would give her husband a negative pee stick for Father’s Day. But in my state, it took until the light was on and when I saw a ‘YES’ for me to fully realize what had happened. Pure glee.
We got it confirmed with a 206 hCG on Monday and now a 463 today. What was supposed to not happen, happened. We were told to not freeze this embryo, this GoodEgg. We, and mainly my wife, went with our guts. We stopped listening to the medical experts, and listened to ourselves. We believed them through IUI, where we were “very good candidates” for pregnancy. And went through it 9 times because we were told not to give up.
We were told we had a 50-60% chance for the first 3 cycles of IVF. They didn’t work. And we were told not to freeze that GoodEgg, that we’d only have a 20% shot. But that’s the one that worked.
We don’t need to do more Betas. We are on our way to the ultrasound on July 5 or 6, provided everything goes okay. And my wife says it will. She says she feels more pregnant now than she ever did last time. She knows her body ten million times better than I know mine. When she knows it’s for real this time, then I believe it. We’re making it to that ultrasound. And then we’ll keep on making it after that.
I’ve never been more thrilled to go several weeks without sex. I’m excited to keep giving my wife daily shots in the ass. This is all abnormal and weird, but this is what we have. And on Father’s Day, for a brief moment, we weren’t the IVF couple. We were…normal. A wife surprising her unsuspecting husband with a positive pregnancy test. An everyday occurrence was never more beautiful and special.