Yesterday was groundhog day, and also my FET day!
I will start with the END and and say I am so glad I brought home my 2 embies (my "groundhog babies"!) to sit on the couch with them by 2pm. It's a longer story, I will get into that. Basically I have been TERRIFIED that they would die in the thaw, especially since they already had a biopsy taken off them and one of the embies had been thawed and refrozen TWICE, which is definitely risky. (Think of what happens to your food when you do that) So the end result was, they survived and they put them both in and that was the BEST possible outcome for the day so I'm very happy. Now I just have to wait and see if they implant like they should.
OK, I'm now some more details... It was a BIT of a fiasco (nothing like last time when the staff forgot to show up for my early morning procedure since it was not put in their schedule for some reason, but still...)
The transfer was supposed to be at 11:15am and I went early for acupuncture.
So I was sitting there all nervous, and the acupuncture guy was there. I didn't even want to jinx myself by bringing up the topic with him about what his refund policy was if there was no transfer, if the embryos had died. But I do wonder about that. I guess you just don't get your money back since he came in anyway and had to book off half the day for you, whether there is an actual transfer or not. But maybe you could get a free session later, or something? I didn't even ask. I was sure if I asked, it would actually happen (superstitious, I know) So he did his first part of the acupuncture and then we waited around for the transfer and to find out the news about the embryos. They were running late, of course. As the minutes ticked on and on past my given procedure time, five minutes... fifteen... half and hour... forty five... I thought my bladder might explode since you have to have a full bladder for the procedure. The clinic was RAMMED that day and there were 3 out of the 5 doctors squabbling over the 2 procedure rooms. The little patient cubicles were ALL full (I was lucky I came early for the acupuncture, otherwise I wouldn't have gotten a cubicle!) I could overhear all these patients arriving and the nurses going around to see if there was any room, and then sending them back out to the main waiting area. It was like a restaurant that was full and they were sent to wait at the bar. I felt a LITTLE guilty that I was hogging a room for my acupuncture, but then again I was paying a LOT!!! of money so I figure, screw it! I was here first! And I probably paid more than all you b***ches since I had done PGS and had a cancelled transfer, then had to pay AGAIN for this transfer, plus my $300 acupuncture that MIGHT be for nothing if my embryos had DIED. I had enough going on and was not too worried about the fact that they had overscheduled the place. This was not my problem. I just wanted my embryos, if they were alive, and to get out of there.
As I said, the doctors were fighting over the rooms, I overhead the "nice" doctor that I had seen this cycle getting all pissed about another doctor who had patients in BOTH the procedure rooms, even though obviously she could only be in there with one patient and everyone else was just waiting. He was bitching about her lack of consideration, then I heard my doctor saying she would come back in 5 minutes. (At this point I thought my bladder WAS going to explode, so I decided to go to the washroom and let "a little" out, which is difficult but not impossible). Then the inconsiderate doctor was yelling across the place that she thought it would be ok since her patient "ONLY" had TWO FOLLICLES! (She repeated this about 10 times, until everyone in the IVF area could hear) "It will only take about a second to do this retrieval since there are just TWO follicles!" I thought, if I were that patient I would be so pissed. How embarrassing! It's like the doctor was saying "This will take no where near what a NORMAL retrieval takes, it will be so quick since there are just two crappy follicles!" Then I heard this same doctor explaining why she was taking up the other room as well, because she got her patient in there and then the patient insisted that she wanted her husband in there with her and she didn't know where he was! So instead of finding him and letting someone else (like me with my bursting bladder) have the room, the doctor sent "someone" (presumable someone who doesn't even know what the husband looks like) to go "look" for him around the other parts of the clinic while the patient stayed waiting in the procedure room, therefore blocking anyone else from using it. The other doctors are like "what is wrong with you?" and this doctor said "it's what the PATIENT insisted on, I couldn't do anything about it". So stupid. Ok, I feel better about my doctor now, I'm glad this other lady is not my doctor because she has the least sense of all of them and was messing things up for the whole clinic. Aside from my bladder bursting, I was wondering about my embryos dying as this was going on. I thought, what if they survived the thaw and now were languishing and dying as this BS is going on? And in fact they WERE hatching, so I wasn't that far off.
Finally we got in and I was so relieved to hear the doctor saying to the embryologist "So how many survived" and hearing the response "They both survived, but (...inaudible...)" and she repeated back "So both of them survived but then (...inaudible...)" Then she turned to us and said "well, we have 2 embryos, they both made it, but one of them has completely hatched on its own and the other has started hatching, so they will not be doing the laser assisted hatching like they usually do. These 2 were already poked anyway when they did the biopsy for PGS, so we won't poke them again today" They showed us the embryos on the screen and DH tried to get a picture (it turned out dark in the picture because of some problem with the flash, in real life it was much clearer, but it was our attempt). The one that had hatched looked like a bunch of pomegranite seeds sitting in a loose blob. It looked like it was about to fall apart. The nurse was encouraging and said "look, that one is ready to go!" and the doctor said "yeah, it's saying "get me into a uterus NOW!"". The doctor did have a bit of trouble with the catheter and freaked me out a bit when she said "well, she has had a d&c so it might not be going in because there might be some scarring". I was thinking "WHAT? Is my uterus stuck together from my d&c??? Why didn't we do a hysteroscopy or and HSG to check this????" but she did get past whatever was obstructing the catheter and got it in to the right spot, and injected the liquid with the 2 embryos.
That was the best moment, it was like PHEW! I know they are alive and in me. Hopefully things go right after this. Everything I wanted out of today happened, and despite my description of all the crap going on at the clinic, that didn't really bother me, the only REAL worry I had was that the embryos might be dead (sorry I have repeated this a million times, but it was my greatest fear that day) and that didn't happen, so it's all good.
Then the doctor asked if we wanted to know the sex of the 2 embryos. We were not really sure, but then finally said yes, tell us. She said it's a boy and a girl. So now I'm all dreaming of having boy / girl twins, getting SO excited... it's probably very unlucky to think like this but I WANT to be excited and hopeful.
We'll see what happens. Then they asked us whether we wanted to dispose of the 3 abnormal embryos, otherwise we had to pay for storing them. We said, sure, get rid of them. So we had to sign some "Termination of Embryo Storage" papers. However, in our previous paperwork we had agreed to donate unusable or unsuitable embryos to research. After the procedure the nurse called us over to discuss this. I just wanted to sit back down, I was paranoid that the embryos were going to fall out (I know they wouldn't, but still). So we stood there discussing with her about this and she was so dumb she thought we were planning to donate the embryos to other infertile couples and was trying to talk us out of it since these were unhealthy embryos. We're like, yeah, we know that, fine, just discard them then. But she said she couldn't change what we had already signed. So we pointed out that this was not for other couples but for RESEARCH. And she still didn't really get it, she said, Why would anyone want to use them, they will not create life, they are abnormal (Now I think the whole clinic knew about our unhealthy embryos, just like that ladies' TWO follicles). We said, well, maybe they want to RESEARCH the unhealthy embryos to find out what is wrong with them, or just look at the chromosomes or something. Then she got it and told us this was a wonderful gift we are giving to Science, and did we know that many discoveries were made by accident (she was actually pretty funny, we weren't mad but it was just weird that she did not understand what we were saying. Also, I think she had a bit of a problem with English).
So then I was relieved to lay down again and do my second acupuncture session, go home in the car, and get to the couch, my final destination for the day.
Operation picking up groundhog babies, successful!!
So that's it, my beta test is on Valentine's day. It will either totally ruin my day (/month) or be the best Valentine's ever. I hate that there is no middle ground. It will either be awesome or devastating. And I have so much more experience with devastating that I'm afraid to hope otherwise.
I had more questions for the doctor about the hatched embryo, like is it more or less likely that it will survive after having fully hatched in the dish... but part of me just doesn't want to know. And she was gone anyway. I think any more information or research will put a damper on my optimism and I have so little to hang on to, I will just hope that it is a good thing and leave it at that. I mean, it could have just "arrested" instead of hatching, so that would be WORSE.
I have had many other irrational fears since the transfer, like every time I move I think I might be dislodging or killing one of the embryos, every cough could be damaging them, and I get freaked out with every twinge that I feel. "What was THAT????" I tried to sit MOTIONLESS watching tv and I wonder if I'm at the wrong angle. Should I be laying down or sitting up? Is sitting too still bad for the embryos? Maybe they aren't getting enough blood flow? A day has passed and I wonder what has become of them. Have they continued to grow and settle in or is it already over? Was it over before I even left the clinic? Lots of worries. I try to visualize the embryos implanting. I forgot to mention, my lining was 14mm, which is very good.
In other news, our local groundhog, Wiarton Willy, announced an early spring this morning when he did not see his shadow.