We got to the clinic at 8:45 AM on Sunday, as instructed. I think that S was more nervous than I was. I figured that the hardest part (ER) was over, and we had a pretty good day 3 embryo report, so I was hoping for some good blastocysts! Meanwhile, I was just finishing up my prescribed 20 oz of water.
Within a few minutes, the embryologist called us back into a consultation room. She showed us that morning's embryo status update. She had selected two front-runners, a grade 4AB and a 2BB which she said was "almost to the 3BB stage." We had several other 2BBs and some morulas.
Morula is the "solid ball of cells" stage, right before blastocyst. Regarding blastocysts: The embryologist explained to us that the the number (1-6) refers to the stage of development within the blastocyst stage. 1 is just starting to form an internal cavity, 2 has a clearer cavity, 3 is still larger, 4 larger, 5 is "hatching" and 6 is "hatched." The letters (A,B,C) refer to the quality of the cells, with A as the "best." The first letter refers to the inner cell mass (future baby) and the second refers to the rest of the circle (trophectoderm, I think it was called), which will become the placenta. This clinic likes embryos to be at 3BB or above for freezing.
Well, since we had a clear front-runner, we ended up proceeding with our decision to transfer only one blastocyst on Sunday. It was grade 4AB. Not "perfect", but pretty good! I know that a lot of you might have done differently, but transferring only one was the right decision for us. The embryologist also mentioned that we still have a higher-than-usual (2-3%) chance of identical twins, and that this has happened a few times recently in their practice.
After the decision was made, Nurse A gave me 10 mg Valium and had me undress from the waist down and put on a hospital gown over my shirt. I had to put my hair in a hair net again, and S had to wear the full OR-style blue protective gown, hair net, and surgical booties. He will look great in the delivery room/birthing room -- some day!
Next, they brought me over to the OR-type room (same place where the ER occurred last Tuesday). Nurse A scanned my bladder and said that it wasn't full enough yet. (I think I was dehydrated before I started my 20 oz, so I wasn't too surprised). She gave me two large styrofoam cups of water to work on. I mentioned to her about my ongoing stomach problems, and she said that she would let Dr G know about it. Well, they seemed to have forgotten about it, and quite honestly -- so did I! I managed to drink about 1.5 of the additional glasses of water and I could start to feel that my bladder was getting full.
Pretty soon, Dr G and the embryologist came in. I was up in the OR-type stirrups, and they were pressing down hard on my bladder with the ultrasound. He placed a speculum inside and I could feel that he was kinda poking around. No one was talking much. I was under the impression that he was trying to insert a catheter through me cervix or something, and maybe having some difficulty. But 5-10 minutes later, he stood up and said, "Good luck!" and shook our hands, then walked out of the room. I was really surprised, saying, "It's over??" Everyone kinda laughed and said yes. I said to S, "Oh no, you didn't get a chance to look at the embryo!" He said, "Yes, I did. You were busy looking at the ultrasound screen and just didn't notice that I got up and walked over there." Well, obviously the Valium must have had something to do with my confusion, too. (blush!)
Afterwards, they wheeled me to recovery and I flipped onto my stomach to transfer onto the recovery room bed. They wanted me to stay in that position for at least 30 minutes. Meanwhile, I really needed to use the bathroom! After about 20 minutes, I even agreed to try using a bedpan! (Keep in mind that I was lying on my stomach). Despite the pain at this point, and despite the fact that I made S leave the room while I tried to pee, I just couldn't do it. I tried to use a bedpan in an ER once, and couldn't do it then, either. I was really happy when that 30 minutes and I was "allowed" to use the bathroom!
The Valium was kicking in even more, and I was really happy this time that I had a wheelchair escort to take me down to the car. On the way home, I leaned the seat back and started to fall asleep. When I got home, I went up to bed and slept for about 4-5 hours straight. Even after that, I felt groggy. Well, the half life of Valium is 20 to 80 hours, so I may feel kinda "relaxed" for the next week or so!
I spent the rest of Sunday and all day yesterday (Monday) on my bed/couch. S was so sweet to me... shopping, preparing all the meals, and basically pampering me and not letting me do anything. My back is really aching from all that inactivity, but I am finally able to get up today, and hopefully feel a little bit more back to normal. I am also happy to report that my stomach seems to be feeling a lot better! Today I'll be starting something called a Vivelle (estrogen) patch in addition to continuing the prenatals, metformin, aspirin, and the PIO shots.
The other good news is that we have 7 frozen blastocysts now. Five are grade 3BB, 1 is 3BC, and 1 is 4BC. (I don't know why they froze those BC's as it breaks their own policy of freezing only "3BB and above", but I won't complain). We did have to pay 2 freezing fees as some were ready to be frozen on Sunday, and others on Monday. It's worth it, though. The 4 embryos that fertilized 1 day late arrested, as did a couple of others. It's weird to think that any/all of our future children may have already been created. However, it's impossible to know what the future holds...