Saturday, April 10, 2010

Resetting expectations

So apparently I posted about a word and a half yesterday. Oops.

I think it was probably because I was still kind of freaked out about the morning, and so I kept starting things and then getting distracted and moving on to something else. But I'm past that now and ok (mostly). Not quite the bright eyed and bushy tailed girl from Wednesday, but mostly ok.

So why freaked out? Freaked out because I had a plan in my head and had set expectations in a particular way, and then things didn't go exactly that way. And well, I freaked out.

Last IVF cycle (the 1st one in Nov/ Dec 2009) we got tentatively scheduled for a 3 day transfer and then that morning got a call waving us off to 5 days. And we were all sorts of excited about 5 days because we told ourselves that made our embryos bigger and stronger and more likely to be healthy enough to make a baby. So this time I just assumed that the same thing would happen, especially since we had a better fertilization rate.

(Notice the pattern here? I'm searching like hell for anything that will help me predict the outcome of the next step, and each time I do that I get completely screwed over. Also note that if that logic had been correct I wouldn't be doing another IVF cycle. I'd be 5 months pregnant.)

And so I had actually booked two client meetings, one of which was actually in a totally different part of the city and at the exact same time as the transfer (11.00am). Awesome, right? So at 5.30 am I popped awake to get ready for them to call us. And I waited and waited and waited, and there was no call. And the nurses aren't available until 10am, so I basically had to wait until 10 for someone to confirm that we should come in at 11, and not wait until Sunday.

During this entire time, of course, I'm panicking. I'm panicking about how I'm going to be in two places at one time. I'm panicking about why I'm not doing a 5 day transfer and what is going on with the embryos, and I'm panicking just because I sometimes just work myself up that way.

At 10am I call and get confirmation that I should be in by 10.45 for the transfer. And at 10.15 I get a call from my 11am meeting saying that he needs to reschedule to the afternoon and can actually meet in my office as opposed to his office which is 40 minutes away. So I catch a break. A big, freaking break, because someone has travelled in from Chicago to meet with me, and blowing it off looks really really bad. And so I exhale.

OK, I half exhale because I'm still panicking about why 3 days. And so we go in and here's what we learn: of our 9 embryos there are
2 that are at 2 cells so are probably not so great
2 at 4 cells, also probably not so great
1 at 6 cells that looks good/ excellent
2 at 8 cells that look average
2 at 8 cells that look good/ excellent.

Our clinic tends to push off women to 5 days if they have at least 6 average to excellent embryos still cooking, and last time we had 7 at this point.

So I breathe a little more deeply because it's not like they all died off (of course, my fear), but because 5<6.

And so we transferred 2. The good/ excellent ones. And they are letting the rest cook until Monday (their lab freezes on Day 6) and will call Tuesday and let me know if any of the other ones made it to blast, and if they were good enough to freeze.

By the end of this process I was both exhausted and relieved. I totally caught a break on my meeting rescheduling (seriously, that was crazy good luck and I can't believe I skated on that one) and I managed to completely quiet my brain down for the rest of the day. I conveniently had my "pre-transfer" acupuncture session scheduled for last evening, so it became my post transfer session, which was good and very calming. And then I retired to the sofa, watched a movie, read a magazine and ate a cupcake for dessert.

So that's that. And I'm cooking two embryos right now, and hanging around not doing much today so that they can settle in. And thinking positive thoughts about how plenty of people get successfully pregnant with 3 day transfers and how this is still all. going. to. work. out. And today I feel pretty hopeful about things again, and am just stacking the next two weeks with "things to keep me from going batty."

We will see how that works.


  1. I know you probably know this but just as a reminder, I'm one the 3 day transfer success stories. It's all a very orderly countdown for me:

    6 eggs retrieved
    5 fertilized embryos
    4 still going on Day 3
    3 graded as excellent (one 7 cell, two 8 cell)
    2 embies initially implanted
    1 healthy baby boy at 18.5 weeks

    A 3-day transfer is just fine, it's just a numbers game about whether they have enough to have the luxury of picking the ones that continue to progress the best. A healthy embie is a healthy embie whether it's Day 3 or Day 5, if it's going to implant, it will, regardless of day.

  2. I'm hoping that those little embies are snuggling in tight!!

  3. What a whirlwind of a day! Best wishes!

  4. The universe never seems to make this easy for us, does it? ;) Glad you survived a busy panic-inducing day! Most of all, congrats on your transfer. We've been lock-step with each other this cycle--retrievals within a hour or so of each other, transfers as well. I'm hoping that this continues for us for the next 9 months.

    All my best to you and your two lil' embies. ;) Now, for the longest. two. weeks. EVER.

  5. Sending lots of good, sticking thoughts your direction.

  6. Chant along with me, everybody: "Stick and grow, stick and grow!"

    No is time for you to take a deep breath and let it all go. All that noise doesn't matter. All that matters is that you funnel all your love, peace and energy to those little creatures!

  7. This is all good news! My lab likes 3 day transfers because embryos do better inside you rather than outside of you, and so you may lose little embies that would otherwise have made it. Makes sense to me. You just gave them a better fighting chance!

    rest and relax as much as possible. fingers and toes crossed for you.