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IVF: Not for the faint of heart

This post being brought to you by back spasms and muscles relaxers.  And Cheetos Simply Natural Cheese Puffs.  First, I didn’t post everyday like I said I was going to for NIAW.  But I did 5 posts.  I still count that as a success.  And Friday and Saturday’s weather was so beautiful, I could not spend it typing at a laptop.  We were outside a lot.  Saturday I had my graduation dinner with the family.  Sunday was my little sis’ wedding shower, and Monday…

Ah Monday.  Graduation night, yes.  So glad to be officially done.  But we also met with our doctor in a conference.

We’re doing IVF y’all.  Let me give you a minute to wrap your head around that.  Ok?  Have you recovered?  Ok, moving forward.

I think I am still trying to process all of this.  I knew it would probably come to this.  I just didn’t take into account it actually happening. 

Dr. K. sat us down and went through my last four cycles there.  Everything has been completely fine and normal.  Two out of the four cycles, it seems like my estrogen level was a bit sub-par.  He wanted to see it over 500 and three of the four cycles were between 120 and 200-something.  One was 399, which was still lower.  He told us that in the third cycle, when I had a “fair” go-round, looking back, he would have told us to stop after that one.  So, estrogen seems to be quite the little bitch in all this. 

He told us we could switch to injectables and do another round of three IUIs.  But the Femara, which would take the place of Clomid, keeps estrogen at low levels so it would be impossible to monitor.  Injectable meds won’t increase our chances.

I asked him what he thinks we should do.  He said, “I think it’s time to move to IVF.” 

So.  Let me give you a little sneak peek into what IVF is all about. 

This post may be a bit all over the place so bear with me.

First, I will need a saline sonogram and trial transfer.  The trial transfer is where they will measure my uterus by placing a catheter in there like when I did the IUIs.  It’s so the doctor or nurse will know exactly where to place the embryos during the actual transfer.  Both of us need blood work for STD testing.  Note to self: must come clean to Chris about that night in Toronto.

I will do birth control pills for a few weeks along with 5 days of antibiotics.  I will then start meds and then do a retrieval and transfer.

Dr. K. told us that the IVF coordinator will be calling us in about a week for the finances.  Then a nurse will call me to go over my protocols and medications. 

We could be looking at a retrieval date of end if June, beginning of July.

Oh but what is a retrieval date you ask?

So I take a butt-load of meds to grow fantastic genetically engineered follicles.  Like a ba-jillion of them.  Not that many.

I may do a shot to release them.  Maybe.  I’m still learning here, it’s the  fucking blind leading the blind.  The day of retrieval I get an IV, put to sleep, and they go in and excavate those said eggs that the follicles released.  Hopefully there is a lot.  That is a one day recovery.

The eggs will then be.. whatever, tested and fertilized with Chris’ sperm and whatnot.  Little bitty embryos multiply and divide.  Five days later, we return to the clinic for the transfer.  That is when they will put 1-2 of the embryos into my uterus and we wait for a baby to grow.

I realize this is painfully simplified but it’s a lot to understand.  We still have to have another meeting with the doctor to discuss the whole IVF process.  I’ve never been good at summarizing things.  I think I will just explain everything as it is occurring.

Today, the nurse called me and we went over my estimated dates for the cycle.  I estimate the big P to show her face around May 18th.  Assuming this to be true, we are looking at June 6th for the Lupron injections (to suppress my ovaries), stims to start June 16th (to stimulate my ovaries to grow boatloads of follicles), retrieval date of June 26th and transfer July 1st.  This is all estimation.  Just wanted your head to spin like mine did.

As for the financial cost of this, that is for another post.  I am excited, scared, but hopeful.  Right now though, the muscle relaxer is kicking in good and I must sleep.   Again, sorry for the lame post.  Even now, reading through this, it’s not my best work, but I just wanted to get all this down.  So much to know.  So very, very much.

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54 Comments on "IVF: Not for the faint of heart"

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Chris
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Toronto? Guess I should mention Tahiti then. πŸ˜‰ Great job doing a summary that can be difficult to understand.

Jen
Guest

That was a pretty great summary. I hope that this is what does the trick for you!

Cristy
Guest

Wow, that's big news! I remember gearing up for IVF and all the excitement and nervousness that came with it. It sounds like you're in good hands and have an excellent plan. Keeping my fingers crossed that at the end of all of this there is lots of celebration. In the meantime, will be cheering you on.

Emily
Guest

Now that my body is screwing up my plans, our calendars look remarkably similar! But mine will be an FET. Still…it will be fun to have someone else going through at the same time!

Kate Payne
Guest

Hope that IVF brings you luck….it can be overwhelming at first, especially when you go to the injection class (if your RE requires it). One day at a time though, it'll all work out πŸ™‚

Ann Foster
Guest

Looks like our cycles won't be that far from each other!! We will be doing a transfer sometime in July (I think). I'm excited for you!! to me, moving forward always felt like progress!

Janet
Guest

You'll do great. I've done 2 IVF cycles and 3 FET transfers…it seems daunting but I know you'll do great!

rainbeforerainbow
Guest

I'm glad you have a plan. And I'm very glad you don't have to wait too long– just two months until the transfer! Take things one day at a time and it will be here before you know it.

Egg Timer
Guest

A plan is always a good feeling because at least you feel like you are moving forward. July 1st sounds like a great day to conceive a baby.

Aspgriswold
Guest

Wishing you all the best on this next step!!

yetanotherbitterinfertile
Guest

That's wonderful news! IVF is intimidating. We haven't started down that road yet, but we have gathered lots of information from my RE. I'm sure you will do great. Best of luck to you!

Impatiently Waiting
Guest

Very excited for you! Now you can help prepare me! I can't wait to follow along with you! Yay for an honest answer from the doc, and Yay for a plan! Hopefully this is the last time Chris has to do his buisness in a cup!

Kristin
Guest

Good luck on this next journey. You will be in my prayers!

AuntMimi
Guest

Hooray for a new plan! I am hopeful for you!

acoursetothefinishline
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We did our IVF cycle just about a year ago ourselves. If you have any questions please feel free to ask!!

Risa
Guest

Eh. I still don't think it makes sense.

Risa
Guest

Ha ha thanks Jen. I am hoping too. There are a lot of success stories with it.

Risa
Guest

Thanks! Yeah it's a lot at once. I do feel like I am in good hands, though. I like my doctor.

Risa
Guest

That's too bad about the delay, but yes, it would be nice to go through it with someone else. πŸ™‚

Risa
Guest

Well unless there are IM shots involved, I don't need the class since I have been doing the subQ injections from the IUIs. But I agree, it's very overwhelming.

Risa
Guest

That's awesome! I know it'll be kind of scary, so I will be asking you lots of questions like I said before πŸ™‚ Good luck to you this time around!

Risa
Guest

Thanks πŸ™‚ I am so hoping this is the only one we will need, but if IF taught me anything, it is that there are no guarentees.

Risa
Guest

I know! I am glad it's coming quick. I just want to do it already!

Steph
Guest

Good luck Risa! I know I backed out of mine because it didn't feel right, but it sounds like your doctor has a plan and is sharing everything with you, which is important. I know we never thought we would be here, but I hope that it gets you the ultimate end result. Can't wait to read along as you start…maybe I will learn a thing or ten and finally have the guts to do it myself πŸ™‚

Risa
Guest

You it really does sound like a great day πŸ™‚

Risa
Guest

Thanks!! I appreciate the support so so much.

Risa
Guest

Yes, it's very intimidating. I am glad I have been reading blogs and such on it, because at least I know what to basically expect. Thanks so much!

Risa
Guest

Ha ha I know! I am going to be a pro at this very soon. And yes, I am sure Chris will appreciate it very much. Not like he goes through much anyway. πŸ˜‰

Risa
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Thanks Kristin!

Risa
Guest

Yay! Thanks!

Risa
Guest

Oh that's awesome. I will definitely do that!

Risa
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πŸ™‚ Thanks Steph. I think it would be more difficult to choose if my doctor didn't come out and think it was the best option for us.

Chappy
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Chappy
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Hi Risa, I have been following your blog for awhile. I am currently in my 3rd fresh IVF cycle, retrieval this weekend! If you have any questions send me an email at marathon_runner_21@yahoo.com I know how scary the process is and it is nice to have someone to talk to that has/is going through it. A great resource is the Sher Institute, they have lots of videos and forums. I am going to theSt Louis location. Good luck! Sounds like you have a great plan!

belovedburnttoast
Guest
So IVF is certainly not for the faint of heart, but the good news it that you don't seem to be faint-hearted. You can do this! I have nothing to compare it to, but I remember expecting it to be so much worse…maybe all the hype surrounding it planted that seed in my head. Wishing you luck, and hey, our transfers could possibly be close (me and like 30 other commenters here, looks like it's going to be a transfer-ful summer!) so we're in it together. And as others have said, if you have any questions or concerns, I'm always… Read more »
JenS
Guest

I agree with the above, IVF is no walk in the park but my anticipation of it was way worse than it actually was. On the one hand, I am sorry you are having to move to IVF. On the other, I am glad you are moving forward and really hope that this is the key and you will finally get your BFP. Sending all sorts of good luck your way. All us IVF veterans are here to help you through this.

CAM
Guest

Wishin you the best of luck with IVF. I promise it seems so overwhelming it at first, but you really figure it out pretty quickly and it is very manageable.

Catwoman73
Guest

Good luck Risa! You can do it! Just take things one day at a time. The mantra of the infertile…

Autumn Jones
Guest

Good luck! I know how scary all of this can be! If you need anything, don't hesitate.

Aramis
Guest

If wimpy old me with my fear of needles can do IVF, then it will be a cakewalk for a badass like you. I'm also offering to answer any questions, no matter how gross or inappropriate. I'll be following along as you go!

Stupid Stork
Guest

It's gonna be awesome! It's super overwhelming at first and you're right it's not for the faint of heart but it's not as bad doing it as it is thinking about it before you do it. Promise.

Jamie
Guest

Overwhelming, but so exciting! I'll have my pom poms ready!

Em
Guest
Okay, I feel like I have so much to say…First of all, CONGRATS! Graduation…that's huge. You go girl. I think it's an excellent choice to move to IVF and skip IUI/injectiables. For so many reasons. First of all, IVF is expensive but you get pretty good odds. IUI is also expensive but the odds aren't fabulous considering what you're paying. So you might as well use the money you would have spent on IUI injectibles and put it in the IVF fund. Also, my sister-in-law has triplets. They were born at 24 weeks and it has been agonizing to watch… Read more »
Risa
Guest

Hi! I hope everything went well for your retrieval and thanks so much for making yourself available for my questions! It's so nice knowing there are so many to help out during this cycle πŸ™‚

Risa
Guest

Thanks! And yes, it sounds like a lot of us are going to do transfers this summer. It's crazy πŸ™‚

Risa
Guest

Thanks, Jen πŸ™‚ I do believe the thought of IVF is actually more nerve-wracking than actually going through it. I am just really hoping it works the first time.

Risa
Guest

Thanks so much! It is really overwhelming but I know it won't be so bad once I actually go through with it.

Risa
Guest

Ha ha yep. That's pretty much it πŸ™‚

Risa
Guest

Thanks, my dear!

Risa
Guest

Ha ha! Thanks. I'm a total wimp when it comes to injections. Ugh. I am sure I am going to be asking a lot of questions πŸ˜‰

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