On Day 3 we still had 14 of our 15 fertilised embies still dividing nicely (or so we thought) The embryologist who rang didn't go into too much detail except to say we would be going in for a 5 day transfer on the Monday at 9am. We were so excited, this was it! What all this hard work had been leading up to! We were nervously anticipating what the embryologist would have to say but I have to say I was completely unprepared for the news. I get teary just writing about this as it really was the prelude to the way this cycle turned out. We had one blastocyst (a 5 day embryo is called a bastocyst or blasty for short) ready for transfer but all 13 of our other embryos hadn't made it to the freezer. A few of them had arrested (stopped developing) between days 3 and 4 and the rest of them had gone to blasty stage but apart from the one that was transferred they were never going to become a baby. At the point that our blastocyst was actually transferred we were still hoping that one or two might be ok to freeze so we left that day with one onboard and a bundle of positivity which turned to devastation for me the following day when I had the phone call to say we had none as back up. I think because we had so many to begin with this news was particularly difficult for me to handle. The embryologist never shared with us the quality of our embryos as they grew in the lab and so we were completely unprepared for this news. It had always been especially important to me to have some frosties (what we call frozen embryos) as let's be honest - IVF is extremely expensive. In NZ it ranges between $9,000 - $15,000 for one cycle. I wanted to get as many opportunities for a pregnancy from my two free cycles as I could and really believed we would get at least two tries (one fresh and one frozen) but to only have one . . . it felt like the pressure had suddenly gone up a hell of alot. So much was at stake. If this didn't work then we would only have one more free go and then the financial pressure was going to be absolutely enormous if we wanted to carry on trying to have a baby. It felt so unfair and I really never recovered from that initial blow. The whole two week wait to the day of our pregnancy test left me a nervous wreck and instead of being excited I was a mess, crying at the drop of a hat and convinced it hadn't worked. When I actually had my transfer we were very nearly cancelled due to the state of my ovaries. We had quite alot of fluid and internal bleeding around my ovaries plus my ovaries were extremely swollen but because I was feeling ok and my weight hadn't gone up too much they went ahead. I was in pain afterwards for a good hour or two - I felt like I had a major stitch and was really limited in movement I was so sore. Transfer is supposed to be much like a pap smear in that it is a painless procedure so I couldn't understand why I was in pain. It didn't seem right.
By the time our two week wait was up I knew it hadn't worked. I had had cramping from very early on and no symptoms that would suggest a pregnancy had occurred. I was devastated but tried to put on a brave face for my husband and everyone else around me. As expected the morning of the test I woke up to find I was spotting. It was all over. My hubby was still trying to be positive but I knew it was over despite the hope he was holding onto. The ironic thing is that we had the best day together that day despite the fact we were waiting for that phone call. We went to a wildlife sanctuary and a wildlife park and had a ball! I felt prepared for the bad news and even had a good laugh about the fact that the one day we had taken the day off work for a phone call we had decided to go to the one place where there was no phone reception! When the phone call did come the nurse started to give me the news and then it cut out halfway through the results - I later had a message on my phone saying that she understood that the news of a negative result was just too painful and completely understood why I had hung up on her and to call back when I felt up to it! I rang back and explained I hadn't even heard the news and hadn't hung up on her but had just been cut off but that I already knew. And I stayed strong until we got home. I text my close friends and family who had been supporting me through the whole ordeal and it wasn't until the texts and emails started coming through that I lost it and bawled. Not only are you incredibly disappointed that something you had put all your heart, soul and physical effort into had failed you also feel like you have lost that baby as you have such high hopes for that little embryo that is put back. You have a photo given to you at the transfer and that embryo to you is your potential baby. And not to have any frosties was the final straw for me . . . my strength that I had shown throughout the last two years of this TTC journey crumbled. I took another day off work to come to terms with the news and then tried to get back into the swing of life as soon as possible. And with time it does get easier. It just becomes another disappointment of which woman who are trying to concieve with infertility have so many. I wasn't one of the lucky ones who concieved on their first IVF cycle and nor am I alone but I am not going to give up. Giving up is not an option for us. I truly believe that we will get there and we will hold our baby in our arms. We just have to keep trying.