Our Journey in a Nutshell

Real talk: F and I feel so incredibly blessed to have found success through IVF relatively quickly. But that success didn't come easy. If you haven't read our TTC Timeline, then let me break it down for you:  We decided to starting trying to conceive summer of 2013, but each and every month was a failure. We just weren't getting pregnant. Never once did we get a positive from POAS (peeing on a stick). At some point, I gave up even testing because of the heartbreak it caused and just waited it out because I knew, inevitably, AF would come. After almost 2 years, we went to our doctors. My OB ordered all the regular testing required. We worked with my OB and a urologist for most of 2015 but still, nothing. Both believed we were young enough to just keep trying the old fashioned way, but the emotional and physical aspect of our struggle was just weighing too heavy on us not to seek further treatment. Beginning of 2016, we were referred to the in-network RE (reproductive endocrinologist). After three failed IUIs (intrauterine insemination) and disappointment with our treatment, we sought a second opinion. We moved clinics and that is where we got the answers and treatment we ultimately needed.

We started our IVF cycle in July 2016 and it went pretty great, all things considered. I reacted to the medications to stimulate follicle growth much better than ever could be expected - we had to pull up our egg retrieval because they were just continuing to develop and the doctor didn't want me to develop OHSS (ovarian hyper-stimulation syndrome). We retrieved 19 eggs - AWESOME! All were mature and fertilized - WHAT!? Even better news! 12 of them made it to 5-day blasts - unheard of odds! Because my ovaries were roughly the size of grapefruit, the doctor thought it best to transfer only 1 embryo. After that, we had to wait roughly 10 days to have the blood test. Except only a week after transfer, I was bleeding. Our transfer was a dud and confirmed a few days later with the blood test that I definitely did not want to have done. After a few weeks, we had our WTF appointment with the doctor. We had to definitively one cycle to allow my hormone levels to self-regulate and to rest my body. But we ended up sitting out two cycles and had our FET cycle in October.

The picture above is just a small glimpse into what a cycle of IVF can look like - it's also not even close to all of my meds. Some pill bottles were discarded, other boxes thrown away once empty. Yet, I know we were some of the lucky few. I had a relatively low dosage to take. Other women can be on double or triple the dosage I was and still not see much follicle growth. Infertility is such an incredibly long, hard and vastly unpredictable journey to navigate. I hope that every couple facing these challenges is able to, one day, find that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.



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