Honestly when we think about our lives...we all have them- days we shine in the sun and days we are foreshadowed by darkness. Life is a revolving series of setbacks and comebacks. Certainly my days of sunniness and comebacks far outnumber my days of darkness and setbacks. Embracing the darkness and setbacks is pivotal in learning how to grow through our heartaches, letdowns, losses and disappointments. My times in the valley were honestly the times I grew the most spiritually and though this IVF was extremely hard emotionally I can say that even a day after the bad news...I am looking back with such a thankful heart for the experience. I am stronger and more determined now than ever to get that FINAL COMEBACK and have a baby with the love of my life! God has really blessed me with peace these last few days. All the calls, texts, emails, facebook messages have been amazing, blessings and so encouraging! I really love my friends and family so much! I am so glad I did not keep our IVF journey and our infertility a "dirty little secret" like many infertile couples do! No it is not easy putting myself out there especially the failure, hurt, sadness and pain but I am a FIRM BELIEVER that God allows us to go through certain things- sometimes good- sometimes bad- FOR A REASON and for me- that reason is so I can share my journey/struggle/triumph with others and hopefully touch someone or help someone along the way. There are so many people around you struggling with infertility...you would be amazed...and so many do not talk about it. So I am doing the talking for them I guess!
Infertility is absolutely an example of a revolving door of setbacks and comebacks. When Hubby and I set out on this journey we did so with all the confidence in the world that this would work on the FIRST TRY for us. We are young, healthy, we passed all the tests and thankfully our only issue is with my plumbing. Why wouldn't this work perfectly for us? After reading online blogs and forums I became well aware that it's a 50/50 chance when dealing with IVF and we could fall on either side of those lines regardless our infertility issues.
We started out ahead of the game- my FSH was perfect, my uterine lining was perfect, my Estradiol level perfect, Ovarian Reserve perfect and Hubby's sperm also perfect! Comeback times five! The shots were not as bad as I thought they would be...a little setback just because weeks and weeks of several shots a day can wear a person down but ultimately we knew it was for a good cause. We got to Vegas and my first ultrasound showed awesome Follicle growth and response to stimulation meds. For a Micro IVF patient producing 24 Follices was phenomenal. Most Micro patients produce 10-15 Follices. Another Comeback! Egg Retrieval was pushed up a day and Dr. was able to retrieve 14 mature eggs- Comeback again! Out of 14 we had 13 eggs fertilized- we were rocking this IVF! Comeback! On Day 3 the report was good we had 5 embryos leading the way who were already at 8 cell and the other were growing good as well- we still had 11 in the running. Comeback Queen! Day 5 presented our first setback- none of 4 embryos we had left had reached the blastocyst stage that my Dr. likes to transfer at so our Egg Transfer was pushed another day. Setback!
I believe it was Day 5 that the anxiety set in. I spent that entire day on egg shells praying and hoping that our embryos would grow and reach that perfect stage! Day 6 came and we had one early blastocyst and one compacted embryo- Dr. Sher was willing to transfer BOTH. We were scheduled for 11:00....then an hour later- we were moved to 3:30 to give them a few more hours to grow a little more...Setback Setback! Thankfully those two were fighters and we made it transfer! Transfer went perfectly and smoothly! Comeback baby!
I was most anxious because I knew we were scheduled to fly home the next day first thing in the morning with a 12 hour travel plan which meant I would not get my 24 hours of bed rest. Setback! Finally we made it home to the kiddos and our doggies...they were on Thanksgiving Break for a week so I was able to stay in bed a lot and rest up...comeback!
The Two Week Wait has got to be the most excruciating. For me it was because I am such a busy body mom that I felt like my life was on hold for two weeks. The NOT KNOWING drove me a little nuts mainly because I am a control freak and just like to know what the rules are, what is going on and what is going to happen- at all times! Mental hardships certainly a setback! Doing IVF right before the holiday is HIGHLY NOT RECOMMENDED! That caused me such anxiety and stress I cannot even put it into words here...it was a huge emotional setback for me. I literally wanted to skip Thanksgiving! Here's why: because you aren't NOT pregnant but you AREN'T pregnant- you just feel like a weirdo! Ugh! You have to be around babies, pregnant people and people who are asking when you find out when you are pregnant or not...and it feels like going shopping at your favorite shoe store WITHOUT any money! You want desperately to buy the shoe you always have wanted and everyone around is purchasing theirs but you are STILL WAITING TO GET PAID! Does that make sense? Maybe I'm crazy? Anyway what I am trying to say is that the holidays were hard and I encourage everyone to skip IVF in the month of November or December unless you live far away from family and don't have to worry about all those issues.
Taking my first home pregnancy test and getting a negative was sad setback...mainly because never in my life had I got a negative on a HPT so it was a bit devastating...SETBACK ALERT! When we got our initial HCG BETA and it was low, I was honestly not surprised though I had hoped and prayed for better results. The SETBACKS just kept coming...then the second of course confirmed what I had feared the most...a chemical pregnancy and early miscarriage. FINAL SETBACK!
The point I am getting at here is that the next thing to come can only be a COMEBACK! There were many COMEBACKS with this IVF and we are blessed beyond measure that we are healthy and have good numbers for Micro IVF. I am so looking forward to our next Comeback Cycle! I pray the beginning goes exactly the same, only changing the outcome! Sorrow now but joy ahead...I am standing firm and believing that wholeheartedly!
And ye therefore now have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no one taketh away from you. John 16:22