Cycle 9 (part 1) has now come to an end. Here’s what happened…
On day 9 I went to the clinic for a follicle scan, later that afternoon I got the message to tell me to take the trigger shot the next evening. The trigger shot is usually HCG which is the pregnancy hormone. For me, that is too risky so I took a different trigger of Buserelin. 9.30 pm came and I was scared. I had been scared all day if I’m honest, not knowing what the next steps would hold for us. How many eggs, how many embryos and whether or not I would get ill with OHSS again.
I took the trigger shot and went straight to bed. It was the worst I had felt through the whole cycle. Sick, lightheaded and just rough. Luckily, I woke up the next day and felt fine. The trigger shot is taken 36 hours before the egg collection with no drugs the next day. At last, a drug free day!
The day of egg collection came, we needed to be at the clinic at 7.30 am so we left the house at 6.30 am. Luckily it was the only early start in the whole cycle. We arrived at the clinic and were taken into a private room. This was new…I’d been used to being on a ward in the other clinic. I suppose that’s what you get when you pay privately. I was seen by several people, one of which was our consultant, who was also doing the egg collection. He told me that he had really wrestled with the buserelin trigger shot and freeze all because I wasn’t showing any signs of OHSS. He had thought about asking me to trigger with HCG and to do a fresh transfer. He had reached the conclusion that he had promised to take care of me and that’s what he was going to do, so he had stuck with the original plan. Finally, a consultant that had listened to me and actually heard me. I knew I was in safe hands.
Hubby was sent off to magic the beans (his words not mine). I was whisked away on a trolley and knocked out with a sedative. Some 40 minutes later I was back in my room, in pain but feeling ok. The consultant came to see us and told us we had 13 eggs. A great number for my ageing ovaries.
An hour or so later we were sat in John Lewis eating breakfast, just both really happy that we had made it through another stage. Our minds now starting to think about the next stages.
Early the next day the phone call came from the embryologist, of the 13 eggs, 12 were mature. 11 of them had fertilised. This was a fantastic start. In previous cycles we only had a 50% fertilisation rate, here we were with a much higher rate.
I was also on watch for signs of OHSS. By this point in my last cycle I was in A&E. I felt rough, in pain and bloated, but there was no sickness and no increasing of swelling. It all felt a bit too good to be true.
Day 2 there was no update. The pain had now subsided and still there was no swelling.
Day 3 we were due an update. The phone call eventually came at 1 pm. The morning was a drag but the news continued to be positive. 7 of the embryos had made it to day 3 and were great quality. The other 4 had also made it to the right number of cells for the day but they were concerned about the quality so they would continue to be watched.
Day 4 there was no update. I felt dreadful, massive headache, I felt sick, but I hadn’t swelled. This wasn’t OHSS. It was PMT. Day 17 of my normal cycle and I felt like it was day 27. No-one had actually explained that the buserelin trigger would shorten my natural cycle, but it shuts everything down so of course it seems obvious that it would. All I knew is that I felt bloody awful. I was an emotional wreck, not sure if it was the come down from the hormones or the anticipation of the update the next day.
Day 5 and I woke up in pain, lots of stomach pain. The thing we know as ‘the witch’ had arrived. In some ways I was relieved because it meant the swelling would start to subside and I would perhaps be a little more emotionally stable.
The phone call finally came from the embryologist…
“You have 6 perfect blasts going into the freezer, they look beautiful”
They were words I hadn’t expected to hear. We were expecting a drop off between day 3 and day 5 due to the sperm issues, but it hadn’t happened. The embryologist commented that I must have had some fabulous quality eggs…so maybe the avocado soup was worth it! I was in a bit of shock. As I put the phone down, I cried. Tears of relief, tears of happiness.
Another hurdle has been jumped. We now have a chance. We have 6 potential chances to be a mum and dad. There are no words that can describe what that feels like.
I know we have a long way to go and I know that none of these may grow and develop into our children, but for now we have hope. There is a fine line between realism and negativity. I’m trying to stay on the hopeful, positive but realistic line right now.
We have an appointment next week to see the consultant about our plan for frozen embryo replacement in the new year. I have a follow up hysteroscopy at the end of January to check that things are ok, so that’s perfect timing for a potential transfer in February. Well, at least that was the plan.
I went back to work to the news that I am now at risk of redundancy. Its a massive blow, just when we thought we had a plan, that we had a chance within grasp, we are now in turmoil. Everything may all get put on hold whilst my future is decided by others. It is a huge period of uncertainty and so we have to decide what to do next. Whats the priority, what comes first? So, just when we think one hurdle is jumped, another hurdle is placed in front of us, but I suppose that is this thing called life.
I have to remember the positives of this week…I didn’t get OHSS and more importantly we have 6 precious embryos that are waiting for us.