Friday, April 24, 2020

Infertility Awareness Week

As some know, but many do not, this week has been National Infertility Week. The goal of this week is to not only increase awareness about infertility but to remove the barriers and stigmas that stand in the way of building families. 

Infertility is an incredibly personal and private journey a couple takes and many men and women don’t feel comfortable sharing their journeys. Some feel embarrassed or judged. Others feel like a failure because our body isn’t working as it was intended to. But the common theme that almost all couples experiencing infertility feel is very alone and isolated. It is difficult to realize that WE ARE NOT ALONE in this as every 1 in 8 couples trying to get pregnant are diagnosed with infertility. 

We have been struggling to get pregnant for nearly 3 years. It wasn’t easy to talk about a year ago when we were in the thick of it and it STILL isn’t easy to talk about now. When I choose to post about it I feel very vulnerable and uncomfortable. I have this internal monologue and fight with myself every time I share. The reality is I WANT to share because it is such a constant struggle in our lives but I also DON’T want to share because I don’t want people to feel sorry for me. I don’t want the comments of “It will happen”, “Just keep trying”, and “Just relax and enjoy the process”. I just want to share because it IS my entire life and the world around you has no idea the vast void that you feel…. The struggles and devastation you experience on an almost daily basis. Once diagnosed, infertility is a constant. There are no breaks because it is something you cannot escape.

There is also a stigma that surrounds IVF as well, as some people don’t believe in it and tend to cast judgement on those who choose to use it as their method of having a family. Adoption is often touted as an “easy” and “cheaper” way to have a family. But it is not. Oh boy it IS NOT. It is also a long, arduous adventure that is incredibly expensive and heartbreaking and, like IVF, does not guarantee that you will have a baby at the end of it. IUI, surrogacy, medicated cycles with timed inercourse are all no guarantees and none of them are “easy”. None of them are the “right” or “wrong” ways to start a family either...

But this is WHY we need to talk about it and be open about it. Because 1 in 8 couples are feeling THIS SAME WAY. 1 in 8 couples are desperate to connect to the other 1 in 8 couples roughing the same storm. 

When we first started treatment we had no idea the number of friends we had who also went through various fertility treatments to have their little bundles of joy as well. This is so much more common than we ever knew!

As most know, last year we went through the most challenging and emotionally difficult time in our marriage (and arguably our lives). We had the excitement of FINALLY truly believing it was our time to become parents. After many tests and procedures we started our IVF journey and through the retrieval everything went almost perfect! But then we had once frozen embryo transfer that failed to implant. We went through that heartbreak, picked ourselves back up rather quickly and moved forward to another frozen embryo transfer. We thawed out two, one embryo didn’t survive the thaw so we thawed a third and transferred two. 8 days later we got the absolutely devastating news that these two didn’t implant either and it, again, had failed. That broke me in a way I can’t even begin to explain. I was in a pretty dark place through the holiday’s and had difficulty seeing any hope. 

With time we healed and worked through our second loss and in March we felt ready to dive in again. It took me a full TWO WEEKS to gain the courage to call our doctor. But with a shaky voice I finally did and she was able to get us in a week later for a consultation on how to proceed with transfer number 3. I started to get some hope again.

But then COVID-19 happened.

ASRM advised that all non-essential procedures be put on hold for the foreseeable future as it is unknown how COVID may affect a mother or her baby. We cancelled our consult and are now in the long wait until the majority of the pandemic has passed and we hear that we can continue. A few months may not seem like much to many, but for those who have already been waiting years to begin their family, a few extra months seems like an eternity. The void is ever present recently knowing our future of a child is on hold. It’s all I can think about yet there is nothing I can do about it.

While this may seem like such a small thing or like “no big deal”, one of the toughest things for me this year is the fact I will be turning 30. My dream was to start my family at 26. As 26 came and went I was okay with maybe 28… and then 29. But 30 seems like such a big deal to me. I will not have a child this year. I may not even become pregnant this year. It’s another “loss” to me in a way and something I am trying to come to accept. 

So as National Infertility Week comes to a close….

We’ve been trying for 32 months. 
1 retrieval. 
2 failed transfers. 
Countless Heartbreaks. 
& still nothing to show for any of it.

That doesn’t include the hundreds of hours of research. The thousands of miles traveled. The tens of thousands of dollars spent… and on and on and on.

We are 1 in 8

Know that you are not alone in this and there is no “right” way to start your family whether it is through IVF, IUI, medicated cycles, adoption, surrogacy. Whichever way you feel in your heart is the way to have your baby is the right way.

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Decade Reflections

Tonight ends another year. Another decade. And until I really thought about it within the last hour I didn't realize how much this last decade has impacted me.

It completely shaped me.

I had so many experiences, both large and small, that taught me tough lessons and helped me discover who I am and what my place is in this world. It began and carried me through my young adulthood.

In short?

I graduated high school
    Moved to Utah to start college
          I got married
               I quickly became a young widow
                    I lost and grieved a lot of people in a 6 month span
                         Started my career in the laboratory
                              Lost a couple of amazing women and friends
                                   Returned to college
                                        Graduated college with a 4.0
                                             Got married
                                                  Started my career as an MLT
                                                       Promoted to manager
                                                            Experienced infertility

Between and among all of those big moments, between the delicate balance of grieving and living, I continued to live and learn so many life lessons. I spent a lot of time in the beginning of the decade promoting an organization for sick teens and I spoke at a couple of celebrity galas with my dear friends. So many precious moments shared with the teens I mentored and the friends I shared the gala experiences with.

I met some absolutely incredible people, a couple I have lost, a few who are no longer in my life, but all who completely changed my life and will be in my heart forever. I had a couple of failed relationships and heartbreaks and I made a lot of mistakes, some worse than others.

I did a ton of traveling.... always promising myself that I'll return again some day. Some places I've been back to, others I have yet to return. I traveled to Utah, California, Colorado, New York, and Nevada and I definitely left a little piece of my heart in each place I've been. There is something that happens to a person when you travel. Your attitude and outlook on life changes. You come back a different person than the person who left. Many of the personal discoveries I made came from the places that I've explored and the people I've explored them with.

I had a lot of heartbreak this decade but I also had so many amazing things happen to me. I wish I could write out every story and lesson and moment that each of those milestones brought to me but it is a story that never ends. I continue to learn and take different things away from each as I go through various moments in my current life.

I can't pretend that I know what this upcoming year [this upcoming decade] will bring, do we ever? But I have lots of wishes and hopes. Right now I see a heck of a lot of obstacles in the way to get to where I want to be but when I think about it, when has my life allowed me anything worth living for without a few, or many, challenges along the way?! I guess it just makes the journey that much sweeter.

I'm not going to make any resolutions as I never stick to them anyway. I know what I want to work on and hopefully I will find the will and motivation to accomplish them. All in all I just hope that 2020 is kind to me. I hope it comes with less challenges, less heartbreak, and more moments worth living for.

Thursday, December 5, 2019

All Consuming Thoughts

Today is the first day I've had to myself since I found out that our second transfer failed. I realize that while each day has gotten a little bit easier to muddle through, my heart truly still hurts.

Distraction has been good for me. I've thrown myself into work and tried my best to push infertility off of my mind this week but now that I'm alone I'm feeling anxious again. I have butterflies in my stomach and a knot in my throat that threatens to reduce me to tears at any moment. I have a feeling that staying busy today is going to be key. Maybe I'll try to decorate for the holiday's and crochet another hat.

Honestly I haven't felt this sad in a very long time. These last 8 days have been rough and I've been in a very dark place mentally. I don't quite feel as hopeless as I did a week ago, or even 3 days ago, but today it's very evident that I am still sad. My husband and I really haven't talked about it much. There has been SO much to say about it, but when we sit down nothing comes out. I know that if I talk about it, it brings our situation into reality and while I know I/we NEED to talk about it to start working through it, I don't want to face it.

I've sat down to write many times as usually sharing my thoughts helps me begin to process everything and help it to all make sense. But this time the heartache has been too intense and I haven't been able to get my feelings down into words. Today, although I am sad, it seems that the intensity of my feelings have faded a bit and I'm able to express myself a little bit better. So I thought I'd use it as an opportunity for me to finally talk about what happened, why I'm so sad, and what might come next for us.

While in the 8 day wait for my blood test it was incredibly hard for me to get excited about the possibility of being pregnant. I figured that if I allowed myself to get excited it would lead to a greater disappointment when it didn't work.

When it didn't work.

Somehow I seemed to have just known in my gut that for some reason, these little embryos weren't going to make it. I can't really explain it, but in the hotel room the day after my transfer my mom asked me, "So how are you feeling?" I replied with, "Well honestly? I feel like it's not going to work." and for some reason that nagging feeling never left.

This time I waited until the day before my blood test to take a home test. I wasn't going to do it but I stupidly thought that it'd be really fun, if it was positive, to wake my husband up before I left for work and tell him he was going to be a daddy. IVF takes away most elements of surprise, and I wanted to reclaim at least one. But instead it turned out exactly how I figured it would... Negative. Not pregnant. Honestly I thought I would be able to let it roll off of my shoulders and just laugh about it because that's how it ALWAYS has turned out. But something gutted me after that moment. I cried half of the way to work and started preparing myself for my blood test. That night I told Josh I didn't think it was going to be positive and not another word was spoken about it.

I'm SO thankful that the day of my blood test also happened to be a snow day for both of us. I dreaded getting up that morning for another lab draw that felt unnecessary. But I did. I went. I sat on the couch and waited. It took them a couple hours longer to call me back this time. During that moment I had a sliver of hope that maybe that meant instead of my doctor calling me herself that it was going to be a nurse and it was good news! But deep down I knew. My husband woke up shortly before "Dr. Oakes" came across on my phone. I took a deep breath and said "Hello"

It was, again, Dr. Oakes. "Nikki?" "Oh hi, yes, how are you?" "This is Meghan. I'm ok how are you?" "I'm Okay." and then she said she was sorry and that it was negative again. I didn't shed a tear, my facial expression didn't change. I told her, again, that I just knew it would be negative and then I looked over at my husband and knew he was also gutted as he hung his head. My heart completely sank. Sometimes it hurts me more knowing how much it hurts my husband vs how much it hurts me.

She said that it shouldn't be this hard. She was taking our case to her team the next morning and consulting with some other experts to see if anyone else could lend some advice on why this hasn't been working. She'd call me back the next day.

That day I stayed busy. I started crocheting a hat for Josh, I did the dishes, I just did everything I could to not talk to him and to not look at him for too long. I didn't want to talk about it and damn it I didn't want to feel how much it hurt. We didn't speak about it for the rest of the day but looking into each others eyes told everything we needed to know.

That night Josh came up behind me on the couch as he was getting ready for bed. He kissed my cheek and gave me a squeeze and just that gentle touch made me completely lose it. Tears immediately streamed down my face and I sobbed. I sobbed so hard. We didn't say anything, he just let me cry for what seemed like such a long time and then we went to bed, early, without another word spoken.

I woke up the next day determined to be okay even though I really wasn't. Work was going to be good for me and I wasn't going to think about it. But then Dr. Oakes called me on my way to work so I pulled over and talked to her. I was excited for her call, but at the same time so nervous.

She told me that they looked over everything, from my protocol and responsiveness at retrieval to each transfer and really didn't find much of anything wrong. The only thing that they could come up with is that our embryos just aren't surviving the thaw very well before transfer. She said they seem fragile. That is sometimes something that they see in older women, but there really isn't an explanation for it in our case. When the embryos were put into the freezer I'm told they are textbook perfect. Gorgeous. But when they thaw they aren't expanding like the average embryo and that may (or may not) be the problem. The moment she said that they weren't handling the thaw very well my heart sank. I knew what that meant and she confirmed it.

There is a good chance that frozen embryo transfers aren't going to work. There is a good chance that our best option would be to do another retrieval and do a fresh transfer.

We talked through a couple more options that aren't ideal for our situation and therefore aren't on the table. She said we have 5 embryos left and if we, understandably, can't or don't want to go through another retrieval we could transfer 2 more times. She feels like a 2-embryo transfer is the least we should do and she is more than willing to do, and recommending a 3-embryo transfer as in our case it would be appropriate.

I told her we'd let them know what we decide to do and hung up the phone. I SO BADLY wanted them to come to an "A-Ha!" moment and have a magical answer or change in protocol. But of course, that'd be too easy. Nothing about this is easy.

My own thoughts were very loud at that moment and all consuming. I needed to talk to someone so I called my mom. I told her the news and just cried. We talked, she tried to find words. I then got to work and put on a happy face but then quickly broke down again when asked how I was doing. I shared my feelings a little and then threw myself into work.

The Thanksgiving holiday was rough. I didn't have the spirit or heart to be with family and so Josh and I had our own little Thanksgiving at home together. I had tears in my eyes most of the day and the rest of the weekend we were together was the same. I'd break down a few times during the day and I was just impossible to be around. Josh just held me as I cried and we muddled through together.

With all of that being said, we again have a decision to make and it's not an easy one. If we continue with IVF... another transfer or another retrieval. Major pros and cons come with each. I'm majorly grieving what we don't have at the end of all of this after everything we put into it this year and it gets more and more difficult for me to envision this working. A family seems further and further away. I'm completely torn on what to do next.

I want to write more, but I'm starting to have difficulty finding words again as thinking about the decisions and the reality still hurts and leads me on an emotional rollercoaster that I just don't want to be on right now. I'll pick this up again later, perhaps after my thoughts are a bit more clear.

I just want you to know that if I've been distant, emotional, or bitchy, I promise it isn't direct towards you and I'm sorry if you feel like it has. Like I said above, I've been difficult to be around. I know I haven't answered a few text messages and I've had to tell people that I don't want to talk about it after being asked how I am. But please know that I am so glad that you've checked in with me. Even if I don't respond or brush you off, I so appreciate the check in's.

Monday, November 18, 2019

Transfer Day - Take Two

The journey to FET #2 has been filled with more anxiety and nerves than I would have liked. After going through a failed transfer it is hard to get my hopes up and to be excited and try to enjoy the moment.

I have been taking Estrace for a couple of weeks now and Progesterone In Oil (PIO) injections for 5 days in prep for this transfer. For the most part the process has been the same however I have felt a lot more emotional this time, likely from all of the hormones.

Today was the day for transfer number two! As I lay here on bedrest I still am in awe of the entire process. Months of appointments, procedures, and testing lead up to this day and then it is over in a flash as the actual transfer only takes about 5 minutes!

I started the day out pretty anxious. Didn't have much of an appetite, felt like puking, and I was on the brink of an anxiety attack as we headed to the hospital. I kept having to swallow back tears and kept telling myself to just breathe. It is in His hands and I need to have faith and trust in my doctor and her team. This will all be okay.

After a lot of thought and in talking with the doctor Josh and I decided to transfer 2 embryos this time. Transferring 2 doesn't necessarily guarantee a pregnancy, however it increases the chance of a singleton pregnancy to 65-70% and overall increases the chance of multiples to 25%. These are all odds we thought a lot about and felt in our hearts was the best decision for us.

The clinic called about an hour before I was supposed to arrive at the hospital and let us know that Embryo #1 thawed out great and was ready for transfer. Embryo #2 however was struggling post thaw and needed a little more time. They wanted to give it another hour to perk up like it was supposed to and if it didn't quite get there we'd decide then whether we wanted to thaw a different embryo out so we could continue on with a 2-embryo transfer.

We arrived at the hospital, did all of the intake paperwork and tests, and waited for a bit before my doctor came in to chat with me. She said that embryo #2 was starting to degenerate and wouldn't make it so we talked about thawing out another. I strongly felt like doing 2 was the best decision and she agreed that was the right thing to do. So transfer was delayed by about 15 minutes [with a full bladder it begins to feel like a long time!]. 30 minutes later she came back and said Embryo #3 thawed well and is also ready to transfer!

As said above, the actual transfer took about 5 minutes. They drew up both embryos into a catheter, inserted them into the uterus and got the final okay that they both were placed where they needed to be! I was required to rest for 45 minutes before being discharged and then we headed back to the hotel. I had a wonderful 3 hour nap and am continuing to try to relax and stay calm.

I am so thankful that my anxiety has lessened as the day has progressed. I attribute a lot of that to the Valium that I had to take this morning but I also know that the moment has passed and there is little that I can do to control the situation. It is all out of my hands.

Thanks for all the prayers and positive thoughts up to this point. I know that we have so much support and we are very, very thankful. I continue to ask for prayers that these embryos continue to be strong and continue to develop, for my body to stay relaxed, for my uterus to be receptive for implantation, for my anxiety to keep at bay, and for a good amount of patience as we wait for the blood test to see if this finally worked!

Top Left: Embryo #2 that didn't quite make it after the thaw
Top Right & Middle: Embryo #1 right after thaw and then right before transfer
Bottom Right: Embryo #3 that was thawed and transferred right away

Friday, November 1, 2019

Our First FET

Words don't come easy when the news you dreamt of sharing turns into news that breaks your heart.

The month of October has been full of complex emotions for Josh and I. At the beginning on the month we quietly began our protocol to prepare for our first frozen embryo transfer (FET). Lots of pills, an ultrasound, and several progesterone injections later, we got to hold a picture of our beautifully thawed little embaby and amazingly got to watch as our RE gently transferred it to its new home.

We left the clinic in awe. We had hope, we were optimistic, and we were overjoyed that maybe it was finally our turn to become the parents that we've been painstakingly trying to become.

Day 1, 2, 3, and 4 post transfer passed slowly and both Josh and I were thankful for the distraction of our jobs and ordinary life. Hope and optimism prevailed. Medications and routines continued as if this little embryo implanted into its new home comfortablly.

As the next days moved forward and home pregnancy tests continued to be negative, nerves, doubts, and disappointment slowly creeped in. At first I laughed... of course they are negative, it is still far too early... but then why are some of the ladies in my support group already getting positives? I still shrugged it off... mine will come.

But then on day 6 the reality of the 50% chance that this little embryo may not have made it became clear in my mind. I hid my fear at first, but my husband knows me well and knew I wasn't okay. I cried. I shared my doubts. We talked about our optimism turning into doubt and we moved forward.

Day 7... negative again. Deep down I knew.

Day 8 was my Beta, (blood HCG test). My home test was again negative and even though I knew it would be negative, once I got home I prayed fervently, through tears, that there was some hope of a miracle.

Exactly 1 hour later my phone rang and my heart skipped a beat. Dr. Oakes' office. I took a deep breath and said hello. It was Dr. Oakes herself. Immediately the tears streamed down my face. I knew. She asked how I was and I lied. I said okay.

She told me she was floored. Completely stunned. My test was negative and our embryo failed to implant. Her words only partly stuck with me as I was trying to compose myself enough to comment. She said that typically she doesn't say very much during transfer because she doesn't want to give any sense of false hope because transfers DO fail. But she told me that our embryo just looked perfect. It thawed beautifully, transferred very well, and she fully expected it to be a success. She reiterated to me the fact that approximately 40% of embryos are chromosomally or genetically abnormal. She feels that, in her words, "We just didn't choose the right one".

I couldn't think of any words to say. No questions to ask. My tender heart was broken. She went on to say that she feels our protocol was perfect and that we are welcome to transfer again next cycle, or wait it out until we are ready. She invited Josh and/or I to call her and ask any questions or voice any concerns at any time and she would make the time to talk to us about what is next.

I thanked her, she told me, "Today is a bad day, take care of yourself". I hung up and just stared forward. Now what? I made my way to the couch and after sitting down I let out the biggest, ugliest sob that I'd been holding in for days. I had never felt so alone in my life. My husband was at work and I felt like I was literally going to fall apart. I didn't expect the news to devastate me in that moment quite like it did. I cried and after composing myself just enough, I called Josh. News I didn't want to deliver over the phone, but I had no other choice. He didn't answer and so I sat there with tears streaming down my face.

Eventually I picked myself back up and started distracting myself with laundry and by getting ready for work. Then Josh called and I dreaded talking to him. I wanted nothing more than for him to rush home and be with me. Even more-so I didn't want him to be alone. I knew how I felt and it crushed my heart to think that he may feel the same way yet be surrounded by his students unable to process the news.

I answered and stuttered to tell him. We didn't exchange many words, but I know that we could both tell by each others voices that we were heartbroken. It killed me that I couldn't come home that night so that we could be together. I hated to know we would both be alone. I cried the entire way to work and as I got closer put on a mask that hid the devastation I was feeling in my heart. Work was the best distraction.

We've been doing better since Tuesday when we found out, but our hearts still hurt. We continue to grieve for our little embryo, we grieve for all of the time lost, the time taken off of work, we grieve for the money we spent, we grieve for the seemingly perfect timeline that could have been, we grieve knowing that we could have been 4 weeks along, we grieve for the future that we thought we had started. We just grieve.

I find myself doing mostly okay, but I have moments of sadness and I've had quite a few moments of being angry and bitter that this didn't work out. I've been talking to another women who had the same timeline for her FET that we did. Her's also did not work and she has been a wonderful resource for me as we both struggle to understand the why's and as we try to figure out what to do next.

Keeping this transfer journey quiet was good in theory but we realize how lonely it has made us feel after we found out that it did not work. It's made me realize how much I appreciate the support and how thankful I am of the support of family and friends as we take each step. It's hard to know when to share and where to draw the line because all of this is so incredibly emotional and personal. But again, we are constantly made aware of how amazing our support system is.

I am so thankful to walk this path with my husband. While work has kept us apart, he's been the only person I've really wanted to be around as no one knows this journey better than him. I'm thankful for the weekend to spend some quality time together to focus on us and to continue to move forward.

Josh and I have had a couple of opportunities to talk about what our next steps are going to be. The conversations have been good but the decisions to make are so difficult and must come so quickly. We will be going through with another FET before the end of this year the question we must quickly face is when. We also have the difficult decision of how many embryos to transfer, as she has given us the option of 1 or 2. We appreciate many thoughts and prayers of guidance for us. For us to know in our hearts the answers to the decisions that we face.

The journey is not over for us, we've just hit another step in the process that we will overcome. The end result is becoming even sweeter and so much more special for us. It's an end result that we absolutely cannot wait for.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

How Many to Transfer?

Throughout this process a super common question that both Josh and I have been asked is

"How many are you going to transfer?!"

I thought I'd do a quick post to address this as there are so many misconceptions about how the entire IVF process works and how transfer works. After we tell friends that we have 9 frozen embryos we have to giggle because it is surprising the number of people who think that they get transferred all at the same time! They ask us if we will end up like Octomom or something! I am relieved to say that it is pretty rare to transfer more than 2, SOMETIMES 3 embryos at a time.

Each of the embryos are frozen separately and therefore they are able to be thawed individually. The goal of my RE, and most REs out there, is to give the patient the best chance of a live birth with few to no complications. With that being said, most women have the best chance with only transferring one, sometimes 2 depending on the reason for the infertility.

In our case, it was recommended for us to only transfer one embryo unless we were dead set on two. Josh and I both thought about doing two, and we thought about the possibility of twins. It could be a lot of fun, and you get two for the price of one! BUT we decided that we wanted to do what our RE said was going to give us the best chance at a successful transfer and pregnancy. So far all of the steps that we have taken to get where we are have went according to plan and so hopefully one will do it!

I have learned that just because you transfer multiple embryos it does NOT increase the success rate of the transfer, instead it just increases the chance of multiples. Furthermore the more embryos that you transfer the greater the chance of complications throughout your pregnancy if they all implant successfully.

The thought of carrying twins scares me, especially because of my health history. I don't really want to carry two babies in my belly at one time anyway! Ha! And the thought of actually raising twins in the beginning is also really scary... first time parents responsible for TWO lives. You also have double the cost of everything all at one time and that within itself is intimidating!

So with all of that being said, we decided to only transfer one embryo. If, for some reason, this little embaby doesn't make it, it may be recommended to transfer two, but we will always go with the doctors recommendation of what will be best for us! If we are ever blessed with twins, we would be scared but absolutely overjoyed at the opportunity!

Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Our little Embryos

Life since egg retrieval has been much better than expected! It has definitely been filled with a lot of suspense as we have waited for each call, but recovery wise it has been so good!

I have heard horror stories of recovery post retrieval so I tried to expect and prepare for the worse. The day of the retrieval I had some cramping and discomfort but I didn't have to take any medication for it other than what they gave me at the hospital before I was discharged. I woke up Saturday feeling pretty well and we drove the 4 hours home. By the time I got home I was fairly uncomfortable from the bumps and sitting up for so long. Sunday I took it fairly easy and by Monday I returned to work. I was probably feeling about 90% on Monday and by Tuesday I was feeling 100%!

Saturday I woke up so early and couldn't go back to sleep. I'm sure a lot of that was in anticipation of the phone call from the clinic telling us how many of my eggs were mature and how many fertilized. She called close to 11:00 and told us that out of the 13 eggs that were retrieved, 12 were mature, and 11 (!!!) fertilized!! Both Josh and I were so happy. That is such a great number to start with and gives us really good odds for having enough embryos to work with at the end!

She told me that they would call back on day 5 to let us know how many embryos made it to the blastocyst stage to be able to be frozen for a transfer later on.

Today is Wednesday and I got the call! We have at least EIGHT little 5-day embabies in the freezer waiting for us! 8 is an incredible number and so many more than I could have asked for and more than I dreamed of having. I am over the moon happy and excited! We have 3 embryos that they put back in the incubator for one more day. They have a 50/50 chance to make it to freeze, so we could potentially have as many as 11 embryos waiting for us.... Tomorrow will tell!