Part 4 – More Patience…
In Part 3, I shared how many eggs we heard I had from my recent egg retrieval. WE WERE ECSTATIC!
Prior to that, I also shared how a typical IVF cycle is done.
Usually after an egg retrieval, the man’s sperm, and the woman’s eggs are then mixed in order to become “fertilized”..
The fertilization process begins on retrieval day.
For us though, this process was different…
On my egg retrieval day, my husband was unable to provide a fresh sperm sample.
This was so hard for me to digest, and I know it was for him too. I felt so many emotions that morning as they rolled me in to the operating room.
But as I stopped to pray before the retrieval, my head was spinning with thoughts of how Josh had to have been feeling..
With sperm being such a VITAL part to this process, I knew how much pressure he was probably experiencing. The last thing I ever wanted Josh to feel through this process was pressure. (Men who go through IVF have a huge role in it. Men provide so much emotional support…especially when it’s not easy with a woman whose hormones are a roller coaster). I give Josh so much credit for all that he’s done to help us both navigate this process with patience and grace. SO, if you’re reading this and going through IVF, please, make sure you thank your spouse!)
From Josh’s point of view: he was dealing with a pain no one else knew…. Because of the severity of the numbness in his body, he had no sensation. This was the reason he was not able to provide the sperm. (I mean think about it, having to provide sperm, with no feeling in your hands or lower body, and not only having to provide it, but having to do it in such a timely manner…that’s stressful!) Had we known this a month or two prior to retrieval day, we could have tried to collect his sperm at home and froze it until we needed it.
Well, we didn’t know we would ever be in this situation, so we didn’t plan that unfortunately.. (If you are going through IVF, prepare for anything. Give sperm and freeze it way in advance, God forbid anything happens. It’s better having to dethaw frozen sperm than having none on the day of your retrieval.)
So, unfortunately on the retrieval day, they had to freeze my eggs…
This is a big deal in the fertility world.
Women my age don’t typically freeze their eggs..like ever. Just another part to our story that makes it so unique.
You only ever hear of women in their late 30s doing that sort of thing… so I felt alone in this, again.
Upon getting the phone call after my egg retrieval when they told me how many eggs I had (35) we felt a huge sense of peace though. We knew that this was the EXACT plan God had for us…(no matter how hard it was to digest).
So this again set us back. We ultimately had to wait for Josh to recover and regain all of his sensation back in order to move forward with collecting his sperm and proceeding with the fertilization process. This was our top priority. His health came before anything. I never once wanted Josh to feel accused or at fault for any of this. It ultimately wasn’t his fault…It was no ones fault! We knew that this was just the journey that God had for us so we had to learn to accept it and keep moving forward.. one day at a time.
His recovery continued to go great…. and might I add, he was able to collect some spermies 😉
We couldn’t have been more excited! As soon as he collected, he took in the sample to freeze for back up just in case.
From the day of Josh’s surgery on October 21, to exactly a month later, November 21, my husband became a new man and that was a gift in itself. That was all I needed to know. I felt so thankful knowing he was healthy. He was on the road to himself again…
Once things started to go back to normal, the next step of IVF could proceed.
This step involved waiting for me to get my period. (I had never been more anxious or excited for my period in my life…..) This was the only thing separating us from growing our family now..
My period was expected to come on November 26th 2020.
November 26th came, NO PERIOD. November 27th came, NO PERIOD. November 30th, NO PERIOD.
“Why the heck is my period not here yet?” I kept thinking…
I called our fertility doctor and they informed us that if my period did not come by December 3rd that Josh and I would have to wait until the New Year to proceed…
Of course, that pressure stressed me out.. the reason being that it had to come before the 3rd of December, was because our fertility clinic closes at the end of each year for 2 weeks so they can do a thorough cleaning of the lab ….(“are you freaking kidding me??????” were my exact thoughts…..) The lab is where they store all of the embryos and supplies and things)… Because they were going to be closed, that meant that the embryologists (the people who fertilize the eggs) would not be working….which meant that our fertilization process needed to be put on hold.
So, what happens? My period never comes by the 3rd… I was so sad.
If you have experienced infertility, you might know all too well how much your patience is tested.. it seems that the months just drag as we wait for our miracles.
Again, we had to accept the plan God had for us and move on.
It was a blessing in disguise in ways, because I feel that the time we waited in December, it allowed us to not be stressed. We took the month of December to focus on our family and just enjoying our time together.
We were able to enjoy the holidays taking in each moment.
It has given a HUGE thing for us to look forward to in 2021.
As I sit here on January 9th, 2021 I feel excited.
A genuine excitement that I have not truly felt in a while.
I am so excited for what’s to come this year.
As I sit here, I also anxiously await my period to make its arrival again… but this time with no pressure to meet any sort of deadline!
Once Aunt Flo makes her arrival, I will begin a medication called estradiol. What that will do is thicken the lining of my uterus while I am on my period. A women’s lining is “thickened” in order to prepare her uterus for an “implantation” of an embryo…essentially preparing her to GET PREGNANT!
I will take the estriadol, along with some other meds, as directed by my doctor.
By the end of this month, a lot should change for us…for the best!
The things we will be praying for over the next two weeks are these things:
-A healthy period cycle
-My body to react to the meds exactly as needed
-For us to have lots of healthy embryos that come from fertilization
-For a successful embryo transfer to bring us our MIRACLE!
We hope to report positive results from all of this in the next part of this journey….
If you have a chance to read this post before February 2021, your prayers along with ours would mean the world to us!