Today is the day! We have been waiting a long time for this opportunity to come and here it is.
Since I will be going under anesthesia, I am not able to have anything for breakfast. So instead, I shower, pack my luggage, and we drive to the clinic around 10:15am for our 10:30am report time.
I am nervous. My stomach feels less bloated today and I fear that the trigger shot already forced ovulation to occur and my eggs flushed out of me.
Oh, the mind games I play.
We are quickly taken back to room 11 where I redress with my blue smock and booties. The bruised vein gets one more prick and the saline begins to drip into my body. It takes an hour before it’s my turn to go into the operating room. At 12 noon, I kiss Hubby goodbye and shuffle into the OR.
It’s cold and the bench I lay on is short, just long enough for my head and torso. I lift my legs into the leg rests and I feel the vulnerability overwhelm me. The nurse straps my legs into the rests and asks me to move down to practically hanging off the edge of the bench.
I mention the chill and Steve, my anesthesiologist, quickly responds with, “let me give you a hot totty to warm you up”. He hooks me up to the ‘goods’ and the nurse flips my blue gown up over my stomach. Complete vulnerability. Pure humiliation.
That was my last thought.
The IVF process is pretty amazing. We are still in the first part of it all as we need to get the eggs and put the sperm inside and then let the cells grow.
In order to get the eggs, they need to drain the liquid from the follicles. The eggs will come with the liquid into the doctors care. They will pierce the vagina wall and go through the ovaries. I am going into this procedure with just over 20 follicles (that were seen on the monitoring screen).
I wake up about 12:45 in a drugged haze. I am in and out of coherent thought and I am crying. I’m so happy this part is over and so scared there were no eggs to retrieve. Hubby handles the blubbering sentiments and random thoughts like a champ. I even asked if Hubby could go into the OR and take a picture so we had a memory of it. (not an option).
Dr. O’Brien was by my side and shared they were able to harvest 20 eggs from my body!
Oh, what a joy! Great work body, I’m so grateful!
She was very pleased with the outcome and warned me of how sore I would feel. I could already feel the tenderness in my stomach.
Before I am released, I walk up and down the hall with a nurse. I can barely pull my legs out of bed before I feel a shooting pain up my bum.
I comment to the nurse and she says this is a normal pain as my ovaries are so enlarged. I get home and do some googling. This is what I find out:
It’s normal to feel this way since my ovaries were so enlarged that they could be pushing against my rectum. Apparently, the more eggs they retrieve, the more uncomfortable you feel. The reason is that they remove the eggs from the follicles, but the follicles still remain inside you and fill up with fluid after the retrieval, hence the bloating and my engorged ovaries.
Today is day 0– Retrieval day
After I am released, 4-6 hours following the time of the egg retrieval the embryologist will initiate the fertilization process of the eggs. Fertilization is attempted using one of two methods, standard insemination or ICSI.
Standard insemination involves placing a required number of washed, motile sperm into the culture drop containing an egg. Although many may decide to do this, modern science has progressed to the ability to insert a single sperm into a single egg.
ICSI is a more involved process where the embryologist uses a specialized needle and microscope to catch a single sperm to inject directly into the cytoplasm of the mature egg.
Once insemination or ICSI occurs the eggs are placed back into the incubator to allow time for fertilization to occur.
We decided to do the ICSI.
For the remainder of the evening, I rest and move gingerly, giving my body enough space to heal. We will learn more about how many of the 20 eggs were mature and fertilized tomorrow.