Transfer day! We arrived at our clinic this morning at 9 am. I was calm and centered. I felt confident that we would have at least one embryo — hopefully a blastocyst — to transfer. After my last post, I think I just needed to give myself a few hours to feel sad and adjust my expectations before moving forward. So I did that. And then I felt much better.
For those who might not know, a blastocyst is an embryo in a later stage of development, the final stage before implantation. Doctors consider it ideal to transfer embryos at this stage (I think because by then they can distinguish the quality more accurately), although tons of pregnancies have resulted from embryos transferred earlier.
After we arrived at the clinic, I immediately went to acupuncture, which was lovely. I reclined in the dark on a table and talked to my embryos (in my head, of course). I told them how excited I was to meet them and how they were going to love their sister and how they had a whole slew of people rooting for them.
After that, Tim and I went back and changed into our gowns to await the doctor and the embryologist. Thankfully, the doctor this time was not the Ovarian Overlord from my retrieval. I had never met this one before, but he was great — full of jokes and smiles. I liked him immediately. Then the embryologist came in to tell us the fate of our little dudes.
As soon as he saw her, the doctor said, “Hey, how many are we transferring?”
And she said, “Well, now isn’t that the question.”
Hmmmmm….what could that mean?!
Basically, the deal was that there was one top-quality blastocyst totally ready to go. She went through why it looked great, but I don’t remember much except that it was already hatching. Hatching is good, although I’m still not sure why. So woo to that!
Then she said there were two morulas. A morula is an embryo in the developmental stage before it becomes a blastocyst. She said we could transfer the blastocyst and one morula, but she’d recommend transferring just the blastocyst and letting the morulas grow another night. Because I ovulated 5 days ago, my uterus is ready to accept a 5-day-old embryo, whereas a morula is developmentally only 4 days old. So she thought the morulas would actually have a better chance at surviving outside of my body right now. Does that make sense? I think it makes sense to me, but I’m having trouble explaining it without sounding like a dweeb. She suggested letting the morulas grow one more night and then if they looked good tomorrow, she’d freeze them. She said she guessed the one better-looking morula would probably make it to freeze, but maybe not the other one.
As soon as she explained the situation, I blurted out, “Let’s just transfer the blastocyst!” Tim wasn’t sure, though, so they left us to chat it out for a few minutes. In the end, we decided to give our two morulas the best chance to survive and transfer the one blastocyst. Plus, Tim was freaking out about twins last night, so we took this as a sign that one was the way to go.
At my age (37), the official recommendation is to transfer two, but the embryologist seemed to think that since this one was such nice quality, we’d still have a good chance at success.
Without further ado, here it is, our one “beautiful” (embryologist’s word, not mine) blastocyst:
The actual transfer part was quick and awesome. We saw our embryo for few seconds on a giant flatscreen TV, getting ready for its big moment. The mood in the room was festive. Everyone was making jokes about the embryo “looking for real estate” and being “ready to move in.” Tim and I were pretty much bursting with excitement. I felt good, guys. Really good. A couple minutes later we watched on the ultrasound screen as the catheter went into my uterus and then the embryo burst out of it. So cool!
Now we are back home and I am chilling with my favorite little lady. Can I just tell you how excited I am for two days of bed rest? The luxury! Plus, I somehow scored this reprieve on Thanksgiving, which means I don’t have to cook or clean or set a single thing. BOOM!
Thanksgiving. On this day of gratitude, I have an abundance of food to eat, a husband to love, a daughter I adore and a fragile, new life inside of me. I truly have so much to be thankful for.