The results of egg banking round one came in yesterday. Here is the breakdown for those of you interested in boring IVF stats.
Monitoring: it looked like 5 or 6 follicles were growing large enough for mature eggs.
Egg retrieval: 9 eggs!! The most I have ever had before is 6. The doc cautions that many may not be mature. Duh- this is Ivf round 9 I think I know the drill 🙂
Day 1 report: All 9 mature and all 9 fertilized successfully via ICSI! I know not not to get too excited because we have a long way to go to blasts. But still- wow.
Day 3: 7 still growing successfully. 5 of which are 8 cell (!). I usually only have 5 or 6 cell embryos at this point. I have actual hope that I might even get more than one blast which has never happened before.
Day 6: Three embryos make it to blast! That is three times as many as I have ever had before. I celebrate for a minute then am reminded they are being sent off to be PGD tested to see if they are genetically normal. It is a 7-10 day wait and each day that passes I am sure that this good blast number is setting me up for a big fall with the genetic report.
Final Results: My doctor called me last night at 6pm. I know a phone call into Friday evening had to be good news, right? Otherwise wouldn’t he wait until Monday morning to deliver it? I was right. 2 are genetically normal!! He could hardly contain his excitement. It made me feel even more excited. He asked if we want to know the gender and I told him no. In my mind knowing the gender makes those embryos even more real and more a life than they already are in my mind. If they don’t implant and grow it will be even more devastating. I know that may sound silly and maybe it is. But- I have learned to protect myself in ways I need to so I can endure this battle and keep fighting.
Ok so the big question here is what did I do differently this time to have three times the number blasts and 2/3 normal?? Here is what I did different:
- Drank caffeine on occasion. Every other cycle I did not touch a drop. This time around I just needed it and at IVF take 9 I think I earned it.
- Drank a glass of wine on a few of the nights. I have never ever had any alcohol during stims before. See the logic above.
- Had intimate time with my husband frequently. See bullet above 🙂
- Ate whatever I want. Gluten, dairy and even chocolate. In fact- one night when I was especially weepy and hormonal my husband sent a candy gram to our door. I ate half a bag of mini snickers.
Thats it. In essence I totally cut myself slack. And before a fertile can annoyingly say ” wait- you just relaxed. See that is all takes”. No I didn’t. I was moody and stressed and frustrated that I had to go through this again. I was the opposite of relaxed hence my breaking all my lifestyle rules. So, my point here is if you are in the throes of IVF or charting or doing any of the crazy hard and stuff we go through its ok to have cheat day or week. It’s ok to have a glass of wine. It’s ok to do something small that gets you through the day even if it was a no-no in your fertility diet book. I think we all sacrifice so much and put so much pressure and blame on our own bodies, diets and actions. This cycle taught me that it really is all about luck and perserverence. I just did enough cycles to catch a good round.
Lots of love to all of you in this fight. Xo