In early 2007, Emily and I were thrilled to discover that she was pregnant. It was particularly unexpected, because although we had been trying for a few months, the odds of it happening naturally were slim due to my chemo in 2003.
Sadly our little “Peppercorn” didn’t make it past the eighth week in the womb. So after a few more months, we decided to start fertility treatments. A year’s worth of IUIs were unsuccessful, so at the beginning of the summer we started IVF – In-Vitro Fertilization – and the real fun began.
Six years ago I was needle-phobic like you wouldn’t believe. I had often thought to myself that given the choice between dying from cancer and going through chemotherapy, I would pick the former option. Little did I know that would be stuck dozens of times myself, and that I would actually end up giving shots to my wife. But here we are, some 40+ injections later. At the beginning of July Emily started on Lupron (which halts the ovulation process), and a week later Follistim (which hyper-stimulates the ovaries), all in an attempt to create as many eggs as possible for fertilization. With regular blood tests, she was getting stuck 3 and 4 times a day. Even with my newly-developed tolerance of needles, if the roles were reversed, we would be adopting 🙂 She’s a stud.
Anyway, yesterday was retrieval day – we went to the fertility center and they removed all the developing eggs – all 21 of them! The average number is between 12 and 15, so to have that many was a big relief. A call this morning revealed that 19 eggs matured, and of those, 13 were successfully fertilized. Now, that doesn’t mean we’ll have 13 embryos to transplant, as some will not survive. But on Tuesday we will implant two or three strong ones and hopefully there will be a few more that we can put in cryo-storage for implantation at a later date.
At which point will begin the longest two weeks of our lives as we wait to see if Emily is pregnant again…