IVF #2: I Choose Hope


It’s been a rough week. Since my last post I’ve pretty much descended into madness. I’ve been obsessing about follicle growth and root canals and estrogen numbers. My anxiety level has been out of control.

I’m pretty sure it reached its peak this afternoon. My clinic called to say that I would be triggering this evening. A few minutes later I emailed them to find out what my estrogen was at this point during my last cycle so I could compare. For real-life friends: your estrogen number can be indicative of how many mature follicles you have. The higher your number, usually the more mature eggs you’ll produce. You don’t want the number to get too high because then your ovaries can freak out and fill with fluid, earning you a one-way ticket to the hospital. But you don’t want it too low either. For reference, my estrogen today was around 1500.

So this one nurse writes back. I think she’s kind of new, but I’m not sure. She’s young and super sweet, but she just doesn’t seem as with it as the other nurses.

She writes, “Your estrogen at this time last cycle was 258.”

And I’m like, huh? That seems crazy low. So I write he back saying, “Wait, 258? Is there a missing number somewhere? That seems really low.”

And she writes, “Oh, I’m sorry, 258 was your first beta from your last pregnancy. Your estrogen last time was 2578.”

Cue multiple freakouts. Freakout number one: Who wants to be reminded of an unsuccessful pregnancy right before trying to get pregnant again? WTF? Freakout number two: Why is my estrogen so much lower this time? Does that mean I’ll get half the number of eggs? AAAAAAACCCCCKKKK!

So then I wrote, “Whoa, that’s a lot lower than last time. Does the mean I’ll get a lot less eggs at retrieval?”

After that, another nurse wrote me saying sorry for the miscommunication and that I had been given the wrong number ah-gain. The 2587 number was from the day after trigger shot. My number the day of trigger shot was like 1800-ish.

That’s really not that much of a difference than last time. Plus, I had 16 follicles last time and now I have 12, so it makes sense that the estrogen would be a little less. But by the time time I got that last email my anxiety was in super-freak mode, and continued on that way until about an hour ago.

Until I decided enough of this.

I can choose to keep going down this path of fear that I seem so hell bent on walking, or I can choose hope. That’s what has been absent from this cycle so far: hope. I completely lost sight of it. I got so mired in the teeth pain and the baggage from my last IVF that I let the anxiety completely overtake me. I lost sight of what I long for this experience to be: a chance to connect with the soul who will join our family.

Yes, I’m having major teeth pain and root canals. Yes, I’ve been doped up on Tylenol 3. Yes, I’ve been stressed to the max for days on end. Yes, I’m still sad about the loss of my last pregnancy. Ok, fine, these are not 100% perfect circumstances for an IVF cycle. But what in life is ever perfect? Just because it’s not perfect, doesn’t mean it won’t work.

So today, right now, I choose hope. I’m packing my bags and moving my whole family to Hope Street — and that’s where we’ll stay, for as long as we need to. Fear Street is derelict, you guys. And the neighbors are all paranoid assholes.

42 thoughts on “IVF #2: I Choose Hope

  1. Perfect only happens in the movies. I can’t believe that nurse! Some people seriously need lessons in effective communication. That’s totally shit that you were sent on that roller-coaster for no good reason. Ugh. On a better note, good luck with your ER!! May you have many mature, fertlizable eggs, that turn into embryos, then blastocysts, hatching beautifully as they head back home again, and maybe even a handful of frosties. Good luck! We’re rooting for you!

  2. I love this post. I am so proud of you for taking control of your mind and deciding to drive it rather than let it drive you. It is such a tricky thing to do but I know you can do it and keep doing it. And we will always be here with as the hope cheer squad whenever you need us. xx

    1. Thanks, girl. It was good while it lasted haha. No seriously, though, I’m trying to batten down the hatches and stay in my house on hope street, even though it feels like a tornado is trying to suck it up!

  3. Oh, and I had 15ish counted yesterday with my estrogen at 2200, so your number seems on par with your egg #!

  4. Yesterday I was feeling stressed so I searched Pinterest for quotes on hope. One of my favorites was, “Hope is the only thing stronger than fear.” Sending lots of good thoughts your way. You’ve got this!

  5. I am right next door on Hope street excited for you to come on over and give me the good news in a few weeks. Xo

  6. Hope Street sounds gorgeous 🙂 Stick with it as best you can. Just acknowledging that you’ve been struggling is really powerful too though – I think it’s a very kind action. Good luck with the great egg race! I hope it works out brilliantly. xx

  7. I totally get this. And I’m extremely relieved and grateful that you have taken the wheel and driven yourself and your family tons better place. Love the photo, too, by the way. Hoping for a promising retrieval and a powerful connection to that wee soul you’re longing to bring home.

      1. I hear you. This pgy for me has proven to be a similar sort of test. I guess our babies have much to teach us. I would not wish this on anyone. I hope you reestablish that connection and find a path to greater peace of mind. Much love and hope meanwhile.

  8. I literally put a palm to my forehead reading about that nurse. Just wow. I’m so glad you are holding on to hope though. We will get there, and it will be well worth the journey!

      1. Thanks for checking in. We only got 8 eggs. I am praying that all or most of those are mature. I’m trying to stay positive and hope that they are all good quality, but it is SO hard to keep it together this time around. We’re doing ICSI because of genetic testing, so I am nervous about that, too, as we did well with traditional ivf last time.

      2. I am sure the ICSI will be fine honey. I have had pretty good numbers both times we did it. You just need a few strong ones at the end of the day. Crossing everything for you xx

  9. Oh gawd what was that nurse DOING? Maybe she was having a bad, stressed out day or something. How can you get the number wrong so many times??? And don’t they know they are dealing with people at their most emotionally vulnerable?? Sigh. It sounds like you are having a nightmare with the tooth issues + this cycle. I am glad you’ve decided hope is the way forward. If we don’t have hope, what do we have? I hope egg collection goes beautifully for you and you get some really positive news to go forward with. It’s about time you got a bit of sunshine after all this rain xxxxx

    1. Haha, yeah, I don’t know WHAT was up with that nurse. I think maybe a combo of she’s new and also not that bright. I’m trying to keep the hope alive, even after today’s news.

  10. So annoying the mix up with the nurse and numbers! Added stress when ivf already comes with plenty. Eight eggs is awesome! I had icsi last time and the guy who does it said the chances of the eggs fertilizing is greater and this was the only reason to do icsi as I had so few eggs (3 and one was a massive dodgy egg lol). So I think that along with the genetic testing you are having is a positive thing! I will keep an eye out for your update and will be thinking of you. If you need to sound off I am here. xo

    1. Thanks, girl. ICSI didn’t really work for me — only three fertilized! So I am pretty much in the same boat as you were last cycle. We’ll see what happens! Xoxo.

      1. Are you still waiting to see them progress or do you have an embie on board? Keeping fingers and toes crossed for the three. It is difficult not to be disappointed as the numbers drop but I am hoping that these are three super embryos. Keep strong. oxox

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