Technically, egg retrieval counts as our conception day since the eggs are extracted and fertilized in the same morning (so romantic). After 11 days of Ovarian stimulation shots and 10 pounds of not-so-holiday weight we were ready to get these suckers out. For those of you who have not spent weeks of reading up on the egg retrieval process, here is the basic breakdown of the lead up to our big day (through my clinics process):
- Birth Control – in order to regulate the size of your follicles. I had to do this for 22 days.
- Ovarian Stimulation Medications – (see details in my “Line Em’ Up Ladies” post) to grow those follicles from your baseline to the “ready to drop an egg” stage (super scientific term, don’t look it up). I did this for 11 days.
- Trigger Shot – since one of your shots during the stimulation phase is to prevent you from ovulating, the trigger shot tells those follicles that it’s time to let go of their eggs. My trigger shot consisted of 3 different shots taken within 48 hours of my surgery.
- Egg Retrieval – DO NOT WATCH A YOUTUBE VIDEO OF THIS UNTIL AFTER YOUR SURGERY. On account of, it’s so gross. They put me to sleep (thank goodness) so I had no idea of what was happening, but the basic procedure is them sticking a needle through your vagina into your ovaries. From there they extract the follicle fluid containing your eggs, all under ultrasound (not the Lifetime Movie kind) guidance. Don’t watch the video.
- Fertilization – Hubby provides a sample the same morning, and using ICSI (Intracytoplasmic sperm injection), all mature eggs are fertilized.
- Wait- you wait to find out how many fertilized. You wait again to see how many make it to Day 3. Then you wait again to see how many made it the freeze stage (Day 5-6).
- Recovery – Heating pad, Sausage McMuffin, and Teen Mom.
The Embryologist called me on Friday, Day 5 to tell me that only 1 egg had progressed enough to be graded that day, but that they were watching 7 more of them until the next day. My heart dropped and I (no joke) spent the day researching adoption agencies. The truth about this experience is that, there is a lot of pressure riding on the process working, and there are many stories of couples going through this multiple times. I couldn’t imagine telling my husband that we only had one shot at this.
The next day when the Embryologist called, Scott was with me as she told us the amazing news. After our phone call the previous day, an additional 6 eggs had progressed to grading quality, and one more the morning of Day 6. We had 7 kids officially on ice, and I hung up the phone and cried.
On Ice 7