An IVF Journey…Part 3

Going a couple of weeks with no injections, no appointments and no nerve wracking phone calls is bliss! Ooh except for the fact that you do get your period sooner after you’ve had a retrieval, probably something to do with the fact they’ve been prodding around down there. I’d almost forgotten that I had just done a round of IVF when I got the call from my doctor with the PGT (Pre Implantation Genetic Testing) results (focus Lauren). He said that all 3 embryos were great and have no abnormalities. The next step is to have a blood test on Day 9 to monitor my hormone levels. The aim for this month is to find out when I have ovulated so they can do the transfer after that.

Day 9 comes around and I’m back to the dash in, dash out of the hospital car park on the way to work, or alternatively going for a late morning blood test with toddler in tow. As I’ve mentioned before I went through IVF Australia who have numerous clinics over… Australia (der). I go to both Wahroonga and Greenwich clinics. Wahroonga is based at the SAN Hospital and the Greenwich clinic (which is where the IVF lab is as well as the day surgery for the retrievals and transfers) is on the Pacific Highway near St Leonards. I got the call that afternoon to say my levels are still quite low so they will need to see me again in a few days for another blood test. Last time around I calculated that I had my transfer about 3 and a half weeks after Day 1 so I assumed this time would be the same. We therefore booked a last minute trip to Queensland (or rather hubby had to go there for work so toddler and I tagged along), ahhhh sun, sand and sauvignon blancs…yes please! I was still a little worried that my levels would jump up and I would have to fly back early for the transfer but I will cross that bridge when I come to it. My doctor had given me some medication that he may need me to take in preparation for my transfer so I took it to QLD just in case. Flying with drugs was easy! I got a note from my doctor to say why I was carrying the drugs (in particular syringes) and the scary part was not once did I get pulled up or asked about them!

Yes that is a wine in my hand, necessary for flight with toddler!

IVF Australia does have clinics in QLD too but the one near where I was staying was small and wasn’t designed for blood tests and ultrasounds. Instead I went to the local blood collection centre to do my bloods there. It was so easy and simple! My results were in later that afternoon and still low so they were happy for me not to see them until I was back from QLD.

A bit of one on one time while bambino sleeps!

Going on this little family getaway was the best kind of medicine. Knowing that I’ll either be pregnant soon or super sad because I’m not made us really enjoy the time away. We stayed at Twin Waters Golf Resort on the Sunshine Coast which is just the best resort for adults and kids. It was so relaxing!

Once I flew home on the Friday I drove straight to IVF for a blood test. I got the call that afternoon to say my levels were higher so the transfer is booked in for the following Friday. I have to take my trigger injection (Pregnyl, which is used to trigger ovulation) on Saturday night and then start the progesterone pessaries (candle wax looking tampons that slip right up there) on Monday. The pessaries are used to help build the uterine lining.

This particular injection had a lot more parts to it than any I’ve had before.

So hubby had to help out!

I didn’t really have any side effects after taking the injection but the pessaries are definitely quite annoying. You take one a day before bed…. let’s just say liners are a MUST!

Transfer day came around super quick. I was due in at 8:45 am and even though it’s all done and dusted in half an hour I still like to take the day off work. I like to be relaxed all day and sit down (with legs in air if possible) as much as I can. When we arrived we had to fill out a heap of paperwork and then head into the transfer room where we both gowned up.

You repeat your name and date of birth what feels like a thousand times (probably a good thing). The scientist is in the room with your doctor who shows you the embryo using a magnifying camera (the embryo is about one tenth of a millimetre!). The scientist confirms that it has been successfully thawed and then in it goes, just like a pap smear, they check that it has left the syringe and then your done!

You feel like you shouldn’t move and be laying there with your legs in the air all day but before your know it they’re both saying bye and your outta there!

I forced him into a quick ‘gowned up’ selfie. Don’t all people photograph their conception while dressed in white gowns?

The rest of the day I actually felt a little uncomfortable (probably more so because I was tensing up not wanting my embryo to slide out). You feel like you shouldn’t cough, sneeze or fart but the doctor said just to act totally normal. My pregnancy blood test is booked for 11 days time.

So what happens for the next 11 days? This is when I stopped drinking (my husband was happy as we’ll save a few hundred dollars a month apparently…rude!) and I stopped eating all those foods they tell you not to eat while your pregnant (the local sushi shop will really struggle poor things!). I know this isn’t necessary but I don’t like to run the risk of getting really sick and it’s a small sacrifice considering what I’ve just been through.

During this time I had some cramping and usual ‘period like’ symptoms. Just like last time I was sure I was getting my period however my nurse said that the pessaries give you period symptoms too so it was probably from them. I actually really struggled taking the pessaries this time. They made me so bloated I actually looked 4 months pregnant and they started to make me quite depressed too, which is when I decided to stop them, it just didn’t feel right. Sure enough the day after I stopped I felt totally normal again.

A few days before your blood test is scheduled is when your period is due to arrive. It was around this time that I begun to feel similar pregnancy symptoms to last time around, metal taste in mouth, sore boobs and cramping. They tell you not to do a home test as it could be a false positive, but aren’t rules made to be broken?

Long story short, home test positive and a few days later blood test confirmed positive result too! YIPEE!

We are obviously so super ecstatic but it is still very early days and after having a failed pregnancy (after conceiving naturally) once before we find it best to lay low and relax until our first scan at 7 weeks. This scan will be at IVF where they sign you over to your ob and take your money (oh no wait, they already did that weeks ago).

I know we are one of the lucky ones. IVF is not your typical pathway to having a baby but we are so fortunate for it to have been a positive experience two times in a row for us. This is not to say that it’s an easy journey. I know that my Blog is fairly light hearted and at times has been humorous but that is just me! I am a positive person who looks at the bright side most of the time and do not want this to undermine the fact that others IVF journeys may not be as smooth of a path as mine. This blog was created to share MY story about IVF and I hope you’ve enjoyed reading it so far. Don’t worry there’s still plenty more to come.

Until then…


3 thoughts on “An IVF Journey…Part 3

  1. Wow – that’s so fantastic Lauren! All the best, and I hope that you have positive news too at your 7 week scan!

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