From Egg to Embryo

Late Tuesday afternoon, I received THE call.  It was time for my trigger shot and the big needle.  I was told that the shot had to be injected at 8:00 PM and that my retrieval was set for first thing Thursday morning.  Ah, it’s all coming to an end.

Later on at home, we reviewed our online tutorial video, mixed up my meds, and I prepared for the worst.  This shot was injected into the muscle in my behind and I think that actually helped – I couldn’t see what was going on.  Surprisingly, everything went smoothly.

With the procedure scheduled for Thursday, people were asking me all day long on Wednesday if I was nervous.  Nope, no nerves.  With all that I’ve been through lately, this seemed so simple.  We checked into the office and I first met with the anesthesiologist.  I forget his name, but he was a funny Indian man and told me that he was going to put me in “la la land” for a bit.  I went back into the procedure room, laid down, had my IV started, and then he placed a mask over my mouth.  I always like to think back and see what I remember.  All I remember is that the Black Eyed Peas song “Tonight’s Gonna Be a Good Night” was playing on their radio.  And I also remember that the nurse who was assisting had major bling on her wedding finger and I felt compelled to tell her so.  The next thing I remember I was sitting in recovery with Bri and complaining how itchy my behind was.  Apparently, I was very vocal about this problem too – ah I’m sure the nurses got a laugh out of that later on.  Dr. Neithardt (aka Tina Fey) performed the procedure and I vaguely remember her coming in to tell me that they retrieved 15 eggs!  Wow, that’s a great start.

The rest of the day was spent on the couch.  Bri cooked me my favorite post surgery meal – scrambled egg whites with broccoli and tomatoes.  I felt and feel fine now, but I’m still really bloated.  I’m definitely wearing the loose pants for the next few days.

Shortly after 10:00 AM on Friday, I received my first lab update – they fertilized 13 eggs and we now have 13 little embryos.  They’ll be monitored in the lab for a few more days and we should get another update on day 3 (Sunday).  Freezing will take place sometime between days 5 and 7.  As the embryos are monitored and growing, we’ll receive more updates and have a definite count on the number of viable embryos that they have to freeze.  I’m hoping for 5 or 6.  Bri says we can wave and say hi to our kids every time we drive past Christiana Hospital – sounds fun to me.

So, the last few days have been kind of bittersweet for me.  As much as I have complained about the all the needles, limited ability to participate in regular activities, and pending insurance battle, I am sad that it is all ending.  I was thinking about this while trying to fall asleep last night.  Am I sad that now that it’s over, chemo starts?  You bet!  But I’m also sad that it may signify the end of “fertile days” as this whole process was merely an effort to preserve my fertility.  I guess I’ve always taken this whole part of being a woman for granted.  I’m also sad that I have to say goodbye to the staff at RAD.  I guess I might see some of them again in 5 years or so.  I wrote one of the IVF coordinators an email earlier and mentioned that I’m so grateful to be working with them.

Alrighty, its Pizza Party Friday and we have guests!  On the menu tonight, regular pizza with fresh mozzarella, fajitza (fajita toppings on a pizza), and white pizza with spinach and tomatoes.

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3 Responses to From Egg to Embryo

  1. Aunt Patti says:

    The sooner you start the process, the sooner it will be over. Keep your eyes on the prize!!

  2. Jennifer Milam says:

    Along with your feelings of sadness that you mention, I hope you are also savoring a strong sense of accomplishment. Through all the medications, appointments, ultrasounds, and endless shots, shots and more shots, you’ve achieved something WONDERFUL! I look forward to the day when those 5 or 6 little embryos become a bright, future possibility!

  3. amyreinink says:

    This: Bri says we can wave and say hi to our kids every time we drive past Christiana Hospital … is adorable! Think about your fertility, and the long life you’ll get to share with those kiddos, every time you pass the hospital, too!

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