IVF Part Tres Update: Hearts Fully Braced [Philosophical Monday]

So we had to make a few complicated decisions when deciding our new IVF protocol. First of all, let me update you on the situation as it stands: I thought we had 8 embryos in storage, but that was because I wasn’t paying as much attention as I should have been during the process. Basically what happened was that we had 14 eggs make it out of me for the retrieval. 12 fertilized, 8 qualified as “good.” One (Betty) was actually transferred, and of the seven left, 5 made it into the freezer. 3 of these embryos were grade A, and two of them were grade B. I’m still a little confused about what happens to the embryos between fertilization and freezing, but since there’s a thin line (for me) between education and obsession, I’ve chosen not to research it. The main point is that when we got ready to try for Baby #2 we had 5 frozen embryos. This is where things get a little tricky. There’s been a push by some doctors in the IVF community to reduce the number of multiple births. My doctor, who advised us to only transfer one with our first cycle of IVF, was on the front end of that push. However the clinic and storage facility were not. So though my doctor advised individual transfers, our 5 embryos were frozen in three containers. One contained one grade B embryo. One contains two grade A embryos. One contains one grade A and one grade B embryo. Most doctors and IVF patients at the time we did our first transfer were opting for transfers of two embryos. In fact, we would have opted for it back then if our doctor hadn’t advised us against it, since twins make...

IVF Part Tres Update [Philosophical Monday]

So as of this writing, I’m waiting for my period, which usually comes on Sunday or Monday. Then the day after I get my period, I go into the doctor’s office for an exam. At this exam, the doctor does an ultrasound to make sure that both my uterus and ovaries are good to go for the coming cycle, and then if that’s the case, we’ll talk about our protocol for the next cycle. Our original protocol was that we’d try with one embryo, then if that didn’t take we’d try with two. That’s a great protocol when you have no children to start with, but maybe not as great when you already have one child, and no real desire to have more than two children. But then again, we’d rather have twins than say, no second child at all. And timing being what it is, we’d rather have our second child this year, within the budgeted three tries that we’ve set to have it. So maybe inserting two as opposed to one frozen embryo is the way to go for this cycle, if only to increase our chances. I’m sure our doctor will have thoughts on this, as will I, as will my husband. So basically I’m waiting to have a big family-planning conversation with my husband … and our fertility doctor. I think that perhaps I should be upset that I’m in this unusual position, gnashing my teeth and cursing the fates and all that. But instead I find myself incredibly grateful. Not b/c I’m one of those people who always sees the bright side of life — I’m totally not. I can be an awful, miserable cynic about lesser things like my daughter getting an ear infection when I’m on deadline...

Philosophical Monday: A Very Early Miscarriage [IVF Part Tres]

[Ed. Note: This will be my only blogumn this week, but it’s super-long, and I’ll be back next Monday.] Remember how last Tuesday, I said that an IVF pregnancy is very different from a non-IVF pregnancy? As it turns out, a IVF miscarriage is also very different from a non-IVF miscarriage. Thursday: I keep coming back to Thursday, because I don’t feel like getting out of bed. This is often the case on what I call “Is she still there” days — ┬ádays on which your fertility doctor checks that you are or still are pregnant. CH had to talk to me for 30 minutes on Monday, before convincing me to go in and get the blood test over with. And when I was pregnant with Betty, we had the “Why you should get out of bed” conversation for every single doctor’s appointment until I cleared my first two months and was transferred to a regular OB. ┬áBasically, you don’t feel like getting out of bed, because what if it’s bad news? Why get out of bed for bad news? But we have a very busy day on Thursday. I read 100 pages of my non-fiction book, get out of bed, meet with a realtor about a business we’re looking to start, rush to the doctor’s office for the blood test, plug in a late article on FaN, promote Fierce and Nerdy, clock two pages on the 32 CANDLES screenplay — the next thing I knew it’s time to eat before my writing hours begin. I had resolved early in the year to do this pregnancy right, not to forget to eat as I had with Betty, to feed myself regularly and nutritiously. So when lunchtime rolls around, that means I watch a soap...