In the past, we have experienced IVF with one embryo left, IVF with no embryos left, IVF with no fertilization, and IVF turning into IUI. We can add one more thing to the IVF sh*tlist resume: Ovulation before we could even get to the egg during retrieval. Yup. I ovulated already. Bummer.
I checked my cervix last night. It was still high. I still had EWCM yesterday. However, there was this nudging thought in the back of my head that I might have ovulated. My basal body temperature was low yesterday. So I know that I hadn’t ovulated overnight on Friday. I dared not check my temperature this morning fearing that it would have jumped already.
Today was Team Superman day. I put on my Superman socks and Bob had on his Superman T-shirt. We got up really early and arrived at the clinic right on time. When I was still in the car, I took a 10mg Val.ium and could totally feel the effect of the drug right away. By the time we arrived at the clinic, I was feeling drunk, couldn’t talk coherently, and had a hard time walking straight. It’s so crazy how powerful the drug is. Since the clinic wasn’t even open yet, we were supposed to call the IVF room when we arrived. We saw the nurse on our way in. So we went into the clinic together. Everything was the usual. The post retrieval instruction, the IV, the gown, the locker. The only difference is that our usual nurse who prepped us the last three times was actually not there. Guess why? Yup, she’s on maternity leave. She did NOT look pregnant the last time we saw her, although it was November so quite a while ago.
There are our Team Superman outfits.
Anyhow, Dr. Dry Humor was the one who did the retrieval. When I was called into the room, Bob went outside to wait for his turn to give a sample. I lay down on the table just like the last few times. Dr. Dry Humor commented on how awesome my socks were and said that he should’ve worn his Superman bandana that his patient gave him. We joked a little and then got down to business. I asked if we could do an ultrasound to make sure that I hadn’t ovulated. Dr. Dry Humor said that he always does one. This was when things went down hill. He could not see the big follicle on the right anymore. There was a shadow of it. On the left, there was the collapse structure of the smaller follicle. I ovulated some time last night. I always knew that there was a possibility of that happening but didn’t think that it would actually happen to me. All the Ganirel.ix did not save the world. Superman did not save the world either.
Stunned, I lay on the table not knowing what to say. I wasn’t particularly upset. I was disappointed. But I didn’t feel that it was the end of the world. Dr. Dry Humor asked if I wanted to still proceed with the retrieval to see if we could salvage something. In my head, I was thinking, poking me with a needle means that we pay for the retrieval, but since there still could be a chance for an egg, I should try, right. Many many things went through my head. I wished that Bob were there to make the decision with me. I felt so lonely having to make quick decisions by myself. In a split second, I said Yes to trying. So I lay there while Dr. Dry Humor poked his needle through me. Because I was so preoccupied with this shocking news, nothing hurt too much. He did his thing. There was no eggs. I didn’t feel like crying, but I had this feeling of sadness and unfairness and questioned the reason for letting all this happen to us and all the delays in the last few cycles to end like this. The nurses and Dr. Dry Humor were so nice and compassionate. When I sat up, Dr. Dry Humor put both hands on my socked feet, looked me in my eyes, and talked about planning the next steps. We are still going to do a transfer on day two, right? Yes. Are your tubes good? Yes. How do you feel about doing an IUI right now to cover all the basis? Well, it depends on how much it costs? He said, about $500 to $600. We can spare that money. So I made a decision to do an IUI. Dr. Dry Humor said an IUI does not interfere with a transfer on Monday because the embryos are day two, so the timing should be just right. I wouldn’t be doing and IUI if the embryos were day-5 blastocysts.
As I sat back in the recovery area with a heat pad on my tummy, I continued to be stunned. I just felt kind of dazed. It was a totally different feeling from the last few times when we had four eggs, three eggs, and one egg. Having zero egg is not a very good feeling. It sucks. Diminished ovarian reserve sucks. Ovulating early despite having Ganire.lix definitely sucks. But life still goes on. I didn’t cry. I just sat there and waited for Bob to do his thing. Poor guy was told by our nice nurse that his wife did not produce any eggs and he would still have to produce his part of the deal to do an IUI. Later on he told me that he was upset and grumpy, so that affected his performance a little. And it actually didn’t help that all the “new” material that he had in the sample room was from 1992. The other material was perused by him previously already. Hahaha. Poor guy.
We were scheduled for an IUI at 9:30. When we were done with the IVF room, it was 8am. We walked out in the bright sun and went to a nearby popular spot for brunch.
I was mostly in good spirit, but Bob was visibly grumpy. He expressed how done he is for this process. I really don’t blame him. I am glad that when one of us is down, the other one is not. I rubbed his back and told him that I understand. We still enjoyed a very nice brunch. At least the food was very good. We talked about the number of embryos to thaw. He now has an idea of thawing three to transfer, and just leaving the two other frozen ones to be transfer during our donor egg cycle. I know that he’s letting his emotions talk, so I just let him talk. We also discussed about thawing all five and transferring them all. Then we vetoed that because that would mean a chance of one to two embryos from the IUI and five real embryos. That’s just too much.
The IUI was a breeze. We had one done before so we knew the drill. In the room, the doctor showed us on paper Bob’s count and other things. Post-wash was 20 million. This was very different compared to his last IUI where 250 million was obtained. Bob joked about it, saying that he was proud of himself that I asked for two sperm this morning and he gave me 20 million post wash. Haha. Gotta love that man. I was asked to lie down for an extra 10 minutes. Then we went home.
I got home feeling light-headed, and took a nap for three hours. Waking up, I was instantly feeling sad. Why is this process such a roller coaster? Why do we have to go through so much and still get this outcome? How does this fit in the grand plan of things in heaven? I have no answers. I know that God’s timing is good and He has a plan, but sometimes it’s very hard to trust in His plan. I am trying really really hard to do that. Like my title says, we have really experienced almost everything under the A.R.T. sun. And I don’t want to. I don’t want to be the one who says “Oh that happened to us before”. Sorry guys, feeling a little down today. But I’m still grateful that we have a chance of transferring some embryos on Monday. I just hope that life doesn’t throw us another curveball and hope that embryos will thaw well.
Thinking about all this, I got teary eyed for a little. I’m going to sign off so we can enjoy the rest of our day together. Thanks for being there for this journey with us. I wish I could give you better news. I am hoping for a better Monday.