Happy Weekend to you!! Between date night, Dr. F, brunch, beach day, IVF group gathering, Bachelor in Paradise viewing party, chiropractor, smog check, four-month overdue haircut, a visit to my acupuncturist, and more, I was busy this last week, and am behind at sharing an update. So here we go…
Last Saturday [August 15th], Chris and I drove together, for the first time, to RPMG for our 10a appointment. Nerves had me extremely quiet. This was an important [turns out they all are] ultrasound to see if we could get back on the IVF path after our canceled cycle.
On the way in, I messaged my family to pray for no cysts and more than eight follicles. Meggie said 10 follicles, 0 cysts. Chris said 12 follicles, 0 cysts. It was almost turning into a bet. Being the amateur comedian Chris is…he had me message Meg… Speaking of cysts, hey sis! Oh god.
Anyway, we get to the office, and it was totally packed, there wasn’t even a chair open. No A/C on weekends either, toasty! Everyone sits in silence. I don’t get it. I want to talk, socialize, hear their story and where they are in this journey, share compassion and understanding, but nope, just silence. Come on people, we all know why we are here, let’s chat!
Earlier today, I listened to the saved recording from the appointment. Clearly I already know the outcome, yet my heart starts racing, and I get extremely anxious. I will likely never share these with anyone, as I find myself quite annoying, overly expressive, and entirely dramatic. I really think I am just so nervous and turn into panic/freak mode. I am not sure how Dr. F and the nurses do not laugh in my face due to my absolute ridiculousness.
Before blood draw #? [I’ve lost count], Dr. F came to say hello, give hugs and expressed her excitement to see us. I told her that I wanted to see no cysts and 12 follicles. 12 was the most we had ever seen, so maybe that was stretch, but she said she would do what she could, and we would see her in a few minutes.
Blood work while laying down…total breeze. Then on to the painless, but dreaded ultrasound.
Dr. F — [I am always silent during this part]
Let’s see what’s cooking.
So on the right, no cysts.
And it looks like six on the right, fantastic.
Let’s take a look on the left.
[Long pause] And seven on the left.
In the nicest way possible, I yelled SHUT UP! I couldn’t believe it. 13!!!!!!
I am not lying, check it out, look at all those follicles! You just have to be demanding and tell me what to do!
Will do Dr. F!!! This was absolutely wonderful news! Maybe my body just needed a reset. Left ovary was always hovering between three and four. Now SEVEN! Way to go lefty! With that said, Antral Follicle Count (AFC) is ever changing, as I know from experience. My counts have been 11, 9, 12, 8, 7, and now 13. It can vary between cycles, in cycle, or even by the doctor doing the counting. This absolutely does not mean 13 follies [lingo in the IVF world] will be there in a few weeks. This also does not mean 13 will respond to stimulation medication. It almost certainly does not mean 13 eggs will be retrieved, mature, fertilized, and of good quality. BUT, it is a great starting point for my uncooperative body!
Due to the Lucky 13, Chris and I felt peace, relief, and validation with the decision to cancel our last cycle. If this number stays close to where it is, this could mean a handful more eggs, and potentially more embryos than had we continued with the last cycle!
With this successful appointment, I started birth control and testosterone arm gel on Saturday. For the first five days, I was taking two birth control pills each night. I felt extremely nauseous each morning, a common side effect. Thankfully, it has subsided. This protocol, with testosterone patches added in a few weeks, will continue until my next appointment on September 9th. I am confident all will go smoothly until we reach that point. I hope for no curveballs, bumps in the road, hiccups, or whatever cliché you want to use!
As I said in my last post, I wanted to giant smile on my face all weekend, and that was most definitely the case! After the appointment, we had an extremely tasty brunch at Lockwood Table in Solana Beach spent Saturday at the beach. The rest of the weekend was just as lovely!
This weekend my beloved Cardinals are in town to play the Padres! Chris and I are going to the game today – sitting a couple rows behind Cards dugout, and tomorrow – first row in right field. I, for sure, would have gone to the game last night, but settled for 2 of 3. After the outcome, I’m really, really glad we didn’t go. We plan to meet up with some fellow St. Louisans, and I am really looking forward to it!! This is my third baseball season living here, and I have yet to see a Birds win here and in LA. That better change this weekend.
I have learned it is completely necessary to have fun and exciting days/weekends/events/plans to look forward to. It really keeps me positive and sane! We have a new normal, and seem to be adjusting well. Life is NOT AT ALL the same while going through this process, but we have tried to not let it hinder us!
We continue to feel an incredible amount of love and support from so many. THANK YOU a million times over!! Have a wonderful weekend!! GO CARDS! I send my best to each of you, always! Xo
Sometimes the best thing you can do is not think, not wonder, not imagine, not obsess. Just breathe, and have faith that everything will work out for the best. – Robert Tew