I’ve been absent from blogging during our second round of IVF. There are a few reasons, but the biggest one was to help keep it a secret! We’ve started, completed, and know the results of our second round. This round was with donor eggs, as you’ve seen, and our donor was (anonymously) amazing.
Here’s the rundown:
In July, we started preparing for a fresh transfer. Our donor had her retrieval on July 27th, and 27 eggs were retrieved (weird!). Seven were mature and fertilized, four made it to day five.
We were prepping to transfer the best of those four fresh, but my body decided otherwise. Somehow, through the birth control and Lupron suppression, I ovulated! My body, which couldn’t do anything helpful in round one, over-performed in round two. Less than 10% of patients ovulate through the suppression drugs.
My nurse called and said we’d have to wait for my next period to start prepping for a frozen transfer and we were bummed, but of course happy to do what was best. Our four embryos went to the freezer.
Over the next few days, I kept bleeding. My nurse said it was just spotting, but I knew it was more (trust your gut during IVF!). I insisted that I was indeed on my period, and they said “then let’s get started!” This is when we decided to not tell anyone that the FET (frozen embryo transfer) was back on. Our main reason for doing so was to be able to surprise friends and family with unexpected good news when this round worked! We were manifesting its success.
I quickly started estrogen and progesterone to prep my body…and lots of it. I had a nagging thought in the back of my head that maybe I was wrong and it wasn’t a real period, but nevertheless, we moved on. My nurse told me that “if it seemed like a period, it very likely was”. Uncertainty is a bitch.
Our FET happened on August 9th. I schemed and tricked everyone into thinking it was a busy day and I was unavailable. Really, I was asleep in bed thanks to the acupuncture and valium of the day.
The next two weeks moved on and my symptoms were SO different. I started cramping the night of the transfer and cramped up until beta testing day. I had one acupuncture session. I went to the gym once (my husband said I went too hard on the elliptical and therefore should take the two weeks off). I tried to stay busy and was doing pretty well.
The whole two weeks I was peeing non-stop. Woke up 4-5 times a night, peed my pants, the joys of drugs and an impending pregnancy. I had crazy, vivid dreams. The second week brought on bouts of nausea and severe fatigue. I had about two days of very, very dark spotting. All of these things were signs of pregnancy, but also symptoms of the drugs. I knew that something was different this time, but I couldn’t make myself believe it might’ve actually been a pregnancy. I also had many days where I kept saying “I just feel like I’m going to start my period”. I think this happens to everyone, and shouldn’t be enough reason for worry.
I kept from peeing on a stick until the day before the beta test. Through weird turns of events, we figured out that our air conditioning unit was leaking into our basement and we had to do a quick, sudden remodel. By we, I mean my husband, kicking ass and ripping out the carpet, trim, and door and then replacing everything and putting it back together in a week! And fixing the AC! So that day, I knew the bad news fairies were upon us and this sign meant the transfer didn’t work either. So I gave in.
I peed on a stick at 3pm and thought for sure it was negative. My husband still smiled and said he wouldn’t believe anything until the blood test. Well, a few minutes passed, and a super faint second line appeared. It was positive! Barely positive, but any line is a line.
I thought the worst and figured it couldn’t be a strong positive the next day because it was so faint. But there is talk out there that FET’s lead to late implanters (embryos) and therefore your HCG levels would be lower than those who got pregnant naturally or through a fresh transfer. Well the beta confirmed that I was pregnant, cue MAJOR shock. My first beta was 272, and two days later 524. Not quite double, but a 92% doubling rate. I’ll take it.
We used the rest of the week to tell our family and friends who knew we’d been trying. It was so fun, but still scary. Who’s to say this will last? We’re two days away from a follow up beta and I know that day is going to be INTENSE. I have a good feeling, but how hard is it to believe those after all of the pain and trouble that comes with IVF? Too hard.
Here’s to a lasting, healthy, and strong eight more months.