Once again, I hurled myself out of bed this morning and drove back to the doctors for more blood work and an ultrasound. (Thankfully I was not told any horror stories by the nurses.) Instead, I was greeted in the waiting room by a friendly two year old there with her mother (who I am guessing is trying for number two). Had my blood drawn, then crawled up on the heated table for my ultrasound. Apparently my left ovary is not very photogenic and kept hiding on the tech. Thankfully the right is very photogenic. She did mention that they both still looked calm and surpressed.
I got home and did some laundry and cleaned up our bedroom, which was an absolute mess. Drove myself to the gym around 2 for work. My phone finally rang around 2:45. The foreign and very difficult to understand, nurse begins asking me if I sent in my physical exam report. Obviously confused by this because 1. I'm expecting results, and 2. I've faxed that thing twice! I finally assure her I will fax it, yet again, today. She then says "I have your test results" and pauses like she's reading the finale results on Idol. "You will be starting the GonalF on the 22nd, Friday." I immediately respond "THANK GOD!" which she gave a little chuckle to.
Needless to say, I cried. I am so relieved that we can finally start the next step. I am trying to remain calm and positive, praying that will make a difference. So starting Friday, I will now be injecting myself with two shots a night. I am scheduled to go back on Tuesday for them to check my progress.
So for those of you not familiar with my treatment protocol or how this all works, here it is.
Lupron: quiets your ovaries and keeps them from releasing/ovulating your egg. Instead, it keeps the egg tucked snugly in your ovary. Depending on how your body responds, this can take anywhere from 10 days to 14 days.
Gonal F: makes your body produce multiple eggs. The doctor wants to see between 10 to 15 eggs before they schedule the retrieval which can take anywhere from 8 to 12 days. This is taken along with the Lupron for 4-7 days.
Noveral: or trigger shot is taken the day before the egg retrieval. This is to help complete the maturation of the eggs.
Egg Retrieval: done with general anesthesia, you are knocked out for about 15 mins. They make a small puncture in your ovary and remove all the eggs.
Injecting with Sperm: prior to this, my husband gives a sample about a day or two before. This gives the doctors time to see which sperm are the strongest and most viable. Then they take the best looking "boys" and inject one into each of my eggs. They watch them for three days. Depending on how the embryos look, they will either schedule the transfer or wait two more days. (If none of the embryos look good, they will implant 2 on day 3. If a few of them look good, they wait until day 5 and take the best embryo, and implant that one.)
Embryo Transfer: they will either take one great looking embryo, or two poor looking embryos. The doctor has assured us that the embryos do not determine what kind of child we get, (bad looking embryo does not equal bad looking child). With the use of a catheter, or small tube, they will implant the embryo in my cervix. I will need to wait 30-60 mins before moving to give it time to make its way.
Hormonal Therapy: is either another set of shots, or a vaginal gel. After injecting myself for about a month, I opted for the gel. These hormones are given to help enhance the likelihood of conception.
Pregnancy Test: After two weeks they then schedule blood work and ultrasound to determine if the procedure has actually created a fetus. There is only a 50% chance that the procedure will work. The good news at this point is once they have embryos we can choose to freeze them so that we do not need to go through the whole process again. We can simply take the embryos and implant. Luckily Mass. insurance covers for 6 months of freezing. After that, it's out of pocket.
So please say a prayer, cross your fingers and toes that this will continue to go smoothly!