After our little two month Corona hiatus, we are finally able to get back to business and get to transferring!
However, it ended up being quite a busy time off, and I want to give credit to all that happened in our interim before I catch you up on where we find ourselves today.
As you all know, when it was announced back in March that fertility treatments were halted due to the COVID -19 pandemic, me and the rest of the infertility community were devastated. Surgeries and IUI/IVF cycles all over the country were cancelled for couples that had saved and prepared for months to years for their opportunity. For us personally, we had just come off of our second failed IVF cycle, but had 3 frozen embryos we would not have access to for transfer until we got the green light from the medical community. It was heart breaking.
But now that we have made it through to the other side, I realize that a break from infertility was everything I needed and more. After processing through about a week of a lot of feelings about the shutdown , I had to shift my focus to other things for probably the first time in our marriage. I know that sounds really sad and pathetic, but when both of your schedules revolve around hormone injections, appointments, supplements, and lab numbers…it’s hard to shift your focus to much more than getting through a normal day.
But here we were! All of a sudden we had a whole lot of stress forcefully removed from our plate, and my body was given the ability to run on its own hormones and cycles for the first time in at least six months. Aaron and I immediately put our focus on to house projects, as we bought a new house last fall and had spent the winter talking about what we wanted to do for landscaping and a patio. We fenced in the chicken coop, had a cement slab poured for a backyard patio, put up some planters so I could garden this year, and did some landscaping in the front as well.
I can not tell you guys how fun and rewarding it has been to work at something with my husband, without worrying that at the end of the day it is all for nothing. I think we have had more fun with each other in the past couple months working on all of these projects together than we have maybe had since before our marriage. How rewarding is it to work hard on things together, and at the end of the day be able to see and celebrate a finished project?
I know it sounds silly, but we have been working harder than we have ever worked on this “infertility” project for so long, and have had nothing to celebrate for it. So I am so grateful for this time off, and for the time we have gotten to spend together reconnecting. We were by no means in trouble before this, but what a beautiful and awesome reminder of who it is that is standing next to me through all of this, today and going forward. This two months was the best thing that could have happened to me and to our marriage.
I can’t say that all of it was “out of sight, out of mind”. We sat in our living room brainstorming one morning about things we may be able to do with this time off and came up with an idea of getting our embryos sent for genetic testing while we waited out the closures. We spoke with our doctor, who then spoke with some of his colleagues about risk/benefits. Usually, when an embryo undergoes genetic testing, they biopsy the cells prior to freezing them. In our case, the embryos would have to be thawed, biopsied, refrozen, and then re-thawed when we go to transfer them. There is about a 5% risk for each instance of thawing that the embryo will not survive, so it was a big conversation not only between Aaron and I, but also between our doctor.
In the end, we decided that with my history, we were going to move forward with genetic testing despite the risks. If all three came back abnormal, it would save us thousands of dollars and months of treatments that were un needed for transfer. It takes about ten days to get results back from this testing. We finally got the phone call to learn only one of our three embryos is genetically normal.
We won’t ever actually know that it survived the process. We will be transferring that one embryo and pray like crazy that it did!
With that information, we were thrilled to hear that infertility treatments at our clinic opened back up. The full transfer cycle takes two months to complete, and starts with the month of birth control, just like our IVF cycles did. So I was able to start up on those to get going.
After every 6 months I have to have a procedure called a sonohysterogram, which is a really uncomfortable ultrasound in which they hold water in your uterus and it shows them defects in lining if there are any. I am 3 for 3 now on bad news with this imaging. I for the third time was found to have a polyp which requires a surgical procedure to remove. So, for the 5th time in our overall journey, and 3rd time for this specific procedure, I was put under anesthesia to have it removed.
There was one big difference this time, and there will be this big difference going forward. Because of COVID-19, Aaron is no longer allowed in the office with me. He is required to wait in the car, which for this procedure yielded an amusing result as he normally helps me get dressed after these procedures….
However, moving forward, it really will be just sad. He will not be able to be with me by my side when we go to transfer our embryo in a few weeks. For the life he is helping to create, he isn’t allowed to be there for the main event. I’m sad about it, and I know he is sad about it. We understand it, but it doesn’t really seem fair.
Moving forward from here, I will be starting on some estrogen patches at the end of the week. At the beginning of June, I will have only one (yes, ONE…thank the Lord) appointment to check to make sure my uterus is prepped and ready. I will then add in progesterone injections, and 5 days later we can transfer in our one little miracle embryo. If you are a praying person, pray hard! We are emotionally ready for this one, and so ready and excited to see what happens!