It seems like I haven’t written an update about our treatment cycles for a while. Where do I begin?
The last time I mentioned about our cycles, we had some decisions to make. Bob and I talked and prayed about it. We both feel that we are more comfortable with not taking any birth control pills to hold off my period until end of December. I don’t see a point of potentially messing up the hormones in my body this late in the game. In regards to the number of embryos to transfer, we decided that transferring six embryos is just too risky, although it could be wishful thinking that my old eggs would give me more than one normal embryo in a batch of six embryos. But still, I do not want to take a risk of having multiples. I have a lot of peace with these decisions. We are going to transfer four embryos at most. I emailed Dr. No Nonsense’s nurse to let her and Dr. NN know about our decisions.
My luteal phase is usually 13 to 16 days, mostly 14 days. Imagine my surprise when AF arrived on day 11 past retrieval. It had been a wonky cycle and it kept on being wonky all the way til the end. Thank goodness I always carry some pads in my purse so I didn’t create any embarrassment for myself. (I have never used tampons and probably never will.) I guess one good thing about getting my period early is that it’s possible for me to cycle earlier in January after the clinic’s lab closure at the end of December. I quickly did some math and figured out that since my period came on December 8th, my potential retrieval in December would be December 21. The lab closes on December 22. So if we were to do a cycle now, it’d be cutting it very close to the lab closure. Plus we wanted to do a transfer, so it’s basically impossible to squeeze in a day-two transfer on December 23. The lab will definitely be closed already. So yeah, even with an unexpected early arrival of AF, I am still taking a break from cycling in December.
After my email, Dr. NN called me one day unexpectedly. I feel so lucky that every time he calls me, I am in between clients and am available. So far I haven’t missed a single unplanned phone call from him. His main question for me was whether we’d still thaw and transfer embryos if we don’t make any new embryos in January. That is such a tough question to answer. I asked if I had to make a decision ahead of time. He gently said, It’s better to make a decision sooner rather than later. So I promised that I’d talk it over with Bob and get back to him. We also talked about whether to go back on estrogen priming for the next cycle. We both decided to do it. I hope that it doesn’t over suppress my ovaries this time.
Many of our decision are made based on our financial means. If we don’t make any embryos next cycle, should we or should we not transfer the frozen embryos? We don’t know. We have to look at our funds and see how much we need to leave for donor egg cycles. Donor egg cycles cost a lot of money. I don’t know if I’d ever be able to join any of the guarantee programs since I have had an abdominal myomectomy and may not have the kind of “healthy” uterus that some programs require. How much more money should we put into these cycles with my own eggs? Bob promised that he would look at our finances and help me make a decision on the weekend.
I knew that we didn’t use up all of the prepaid services for our failed cycle. We had no embryos to freeze so we’d definitely be credited back the fees for cryopreservation. I sent an email to the billing person regarding the remaining balance on my account. A week went by without a response from her. So I wrote again. She responded immediately and said she’d look at my account and let me know. A few more days went by without a response. So I wrote a third email, to which she responded with a new fees schedule for the next cycle. I opened the word document and was blown away by the amount that was credited back to us. Rather than just crediting about $750 to us for the cryopreservation fees, we can carry over $4300 to our new cycle. So we only have to pay $2700 for our next fresh, thaw, and transfer cycle. I am sure it was because my little egg failed to fertilize. However, I am not so sure why they’d credit so much money to me after doing many monitoring ultrasounds and a whole egg retrieval. She didn’t itemize the services that are being refunded to us so I have no way of knowing, but I’d take it when someone wants to give me back a substantial amount of money. This lady’s math is horrible though. She miscalculated the amount that is due for the next cycle by $40. This is not the first time I’ve found calculation errors made by her.
So with this new information, our decision making has been a little different. It leaves us more money than expected. Bob said that he’s comfortable with not transferring any frozen embryos if this next cycle again doesn’t yield any fresh embryos, because the refund gives us a chance to do another fresh cycle in February. We’ll give it our all to do two more fresh cycles and see what we can do with my own eggs. After that, we’ll move full force into donor egg cycles if our effort doesn’t result in a baby for us with my own genetic material.
So that’s the new plan! I am so happy that we have come to a conclusion and are at peace with the decisions we have made. It’s been nice not to have to think much about doing a cycle at this moment, although I should start checking my basal body temperature so estrogen priming can begin seven days after ovulation. Thank you all for commenting the last time and giving us your feedback and thoughts! I will do a post soon about my thoughts and research on donor egg cycles.