Ranger & a Plan

Let’s not beat around the bush and just cut right to the chase. Unfortunately, we are not pregnant. Our transfer of two beautiful, excellent graded embryos failed. In all honesty (and almost embarrassingly), I never thought that I would be writing a post saying that we are not pregnant. This came as such a shock and surprise to us.

The morning that our beta was scheduled I took a home pregnancy test. This was our plan because I didn’t want to be caught off guard by what the phone call later in the day would tell me. I wanted to be ready for the news we would receive. That home test came back negative as negative can be. Starch white. One line. Where’s the second line? Nonexistent.

I laid in bed and cried to my husband and he kept his optimism. He kept saying we don’t know for sure yet. Your blood test could still come back positive, don’t lose your faith. When I went for my blood test I sat and cried to the lab tech about my negative home test. She was so sad for us and said sometimes the body just rejects the embryo(s) and there’s no reason why. She said sometimes it takes a couple times before your body accepts an embryo.

Later the nurse called and told us what we already knew. Just about ten minutes later, the doctor called. He sounded so defeated. My husband and I felt defeated, but the doctor sounded defeated. He was so shocked that these were our results, he had no rhyme or reason as to why our embryos didn’t stick because everything had gone so perfectly and smoothly. He told us that once my cycle started, we could gear up for the transfer of our last embryo or we could wait. He said whenever we are ready, he is ready. He said that he really believes that our last embryo will be our baby.

Going into this IVF journey my biggest fear was that my body would reject or almost go into ‘shock’ once the embryos were transferred because I have never been pregnant before. Now, we are living and have lived my biggest fear. It’s been a tough, exhausting and very long week but we made it through. We have made it through the darkest of times and now we are ready to face the sun again, put our trust in God and our doctor and transfer our Lone Ranger embryo.

We now refer to our last Lone Ranger embryo as Ranger. Who knows maybe if Ranger sticks and decides to make us a mommy and daddy, we’ll just go ahead and name him or her, Ranger.

This past week I have found it extremely hard to be around anyone other than my husband. It’s hard for others to understand the pain and heartbreak that comes along with this. Technically, we were never pregnant but the embryos were in there and we saw them in there. That is enough in itself to feel like we are parents and enough in itself to make us feel like we lost 2 babies.

This isn’t the end of our story and we will not give up. Giving up is not in our blood and is not an option to either of us. We will see this through. We have made a plan and hopefully God will choose Ranger to be our baby. This is merely a bump in the road and a detour to our destination.

The Two Week Wait

Here we are nearing the end of our two week wait and boy, this was the hardest part of our entire journey. It sounds easy. You go to the doctor for your transfer, have some embabies put inside you and carry on with life, right? Wrong…

Up until now it was constant monitoring. Constant blood work. Constant ultrasounds. Change in meds. Stim injections. Trigger injections. A calendar that became your life and told you everything you needed. The lab techs, the doctor, and the nurses were constantly in communication with you. After your retrieval you get a call the next day letting you know how your embryos are doing then you find out on day 5 how many are still there, then nothing. It’s literally crickets. There’s nobody poking at you, wanding you, calling you and letting you know what to do now or how everything is looking for you. There’s nobody watching your embryos and letting you know how they are doing. It’s just you, your husband and the embabies that you hope have made you a mama.

Some days I feel extremely positive and hopeful that this has worked out for us and at least one of them has cozied up and will soon be our babe. Other days, I feel like our transfer failed and we need to make a plan on what our next step is. This two week wait is a whirlwind and an emotional roller coaster. I feel as if I have done my best to stay as positive and hopeful as I can be, but there are definitely days that my husband has to really bring me back up or the few friends who have been on this winding journey have to remind me to keep having faith.

The thing is that IVF isn’t 100% guarantee that you are going to get your take home baby. I have watched women get pregnant right from the get go every single transfer. I’ve heard others say that it took them multiple retrievals and transfers before they were successful. There’s others out there who have transferred 5 or 6 times and still have nothing to show for it besides the pile of debt they are in. Who am I to say or even think that this will work right away for us and we won’t be one of those people who have to endure multiple transfers before having a child? I sure never thought that infertility would be a word I would use to describe my life, but here I am.

I have to remain hopeful and keep my faith in God that he will bless us. I sure hope that we have our baby a with this transfer but if not, we will be OK and we will keep trying until we have our baby a or a’s. Our story and journey will not be over if we are not successful our first go around. It will just make it that much sweeter when we finally are holding our babe in our arms.

The two week wait sure will put the stress and anxiety on a person. Everyone prepares you for the stims and the appointments and the procedure for egg retrieval and how emotional you’ll become but nobody tells you that the two week wait will be the most taxing and emotionally draining couple weeks of your life.

Embabies On Board

After our retrieval, we were instructed to start PIO (Progesterone In Oil) injections. These are injected with a needle that is an inch and a half deep right into your hip/butt muscle. We have done about 5 nights of these injections. The first night we did it, I laid across my husbands lap with my rear end hanging clear out showing where the nurse had graciously put a giant X in permanent marker on each side where the injections were to go. AJ kept getting ready to give me the shot and I just kept squealing and wiggling around. By the end of it, we both were in tears from laughing so hard. Finally, I calmed down and let it happen. It seriously was not bad at all. I felt the needle go in and then nothing. Since I am also on blood thinners, sometimes I bleed a little after but I also have some gnarly bruises on my hiney from these shots. That’s about the extent of my complaints from PIO. So all in all, really not scary.

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He really is such a good sport.

Yesterday, Monday, was our transfer. We spent our weekend working in the yard, spending time with family, and just enjoying each others company. I also did lots of house work to keep myself from thinking about Monday too much. I didn’t want to obsess over it because I knew it would eventually come and whatever would be was what God had planned. This weekend was the first time since starting this journey that I felt like myself again. My body felt healed and I felt at peace with where we were at in our journey. I felt like I was physically and mentally ready for whatever our future held.

We were quite antsy yesterday morning and ended up showing up to the clinic a half an hour early. We were called back almost right away. We both had to change into some hospital get-up before we could go back into the room where retreivals/transfers take place. Our doctor came in and greeted us and away we went. We learned that only 3 of the 9 fertilized embryos made it to Day 5 Blasts. There was one more that they were letting grow until today to see if it caught up and unfortunately, it did not make it. Our doctor told us that having 3 make it this far is above average and that all of our embryos were a very high grade. He was very pleased with how our cycle had gone thus far and honestly, we both are too.

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For the transfer you have to have a full bladder. So while you have the doctor putting your embryos into your uterus, you also have a nurse pushing on your tummy to show the ultrasound of what is going on inside. It is super uncomfortable but amazing at the same time. They put the embryos on this little thing that almost reminded me of the tool a dentist uses to suck the water out of your mouth during a cleaning (OK, that might be a weird comparison since they couldn’t be going in more different of areas but that’s all I got. Ha!).

We decided to transfer two of our three embryos. As far as I know, I have never been pregnant and I personally felt that if we put two in, we would have a better chance of having at least one baby. If they both take, then we will be over the moon. If only one takes, we will still be over the moon. So, right now I am carrying two of our perfect, beautiful little embryos. I never understood why people called their embryos “perfect” or “beautiful” because literally they are a ball of cells. But, then I saw a picture of ours and all of a sudden, it clicked. They are so perfect and so beautiful and they are our babies.

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Here are our two perfect little embabies that we transferred

My husband would want me to be sure to share with you all that I cried the whole time during the transfer. It was amazing. One of the most beautiful and amazing things I have ever witnessed. I walked in the room a wife, a friend, a co-worker, a daughter, a sister and when I walked out I was a mama. What a crazy moment. I don’t even have the words to tell you what a special, intimate moment our transfer was and how perfect it all went.

The nurse and the doctor kept telling us over and over again how great everything went and how they are in a great place and it went super well. I really hope this isn’t something they say to just anyone, because I completely took it to heart.

In the IVF world after transfer you are considered PUPO (Pregnant Until Proven Otherwise). I used to LOVE this acronym and I couldn’t wait to use it on myself until we transferred. Now, it almost seems like bad juju to go around saying we are PUPO. So, we will settle with saying we have two embabies on board.

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Could potentially be our first photo with our future children 🙂

My world has changed just since yesterday. It is such a weird feeling knowing that these two little embabies are inside me trying to decide whether they want to make themselves at home or not. I have been talking to them and letting them know that it’s perfectly OK to snuggle right in because we are so ready for them and AJ has been rubbing my belly.

We go back to the doctor in a couple weeks for a blood test to see whether our transfer was successful for us or not. We are asking that our friends and family respect our space during this time. Being open with all of you during this time has been wonderful and we have found so much support from each and every one of you but with being open comes the fact that you all know our story. We plan to tell our families either way towards the end of May. For the rest of you, we plan to share our story, good or bad, with you towards the middle/end of June. We want to have some time to process the results either way together before we let others in. We hope that you all understand this and we want to let you know how grateful we are for all of the love, prayers and support. We still need your happy thoughts, prayers, and all of the baby dust you can give during our two week wait for results.

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This popped up on my Facebook feed the morning of our transfer.