Monday, August 22, 2011

Transfer Day

Yesterday we went to the Northside Summerfest in Chicago to enjoy the beautiful weather, hear some great music, see some friends and family and keep our mind off of our IVF cycle. While at the street festival we received the phone call that the transfer would be a day 3 transfer today. This is our very first day 3 transfer. All of our previous transfers were able to be done on day 5 with blastocysts. In the world of reproductive medicine, there are many different schools of thought as to whether it is better to transfer on day 3 or day 5. Allowing the embryos to grow to day 5 in the lab reveals which are the strongest and best to transfer. However, some doctors believe that the sooner the embryos are put back into their natural environment the better.  Due to our low numbers this cycle, our best option was to put the embryos into a healthy uterus as soon as possible. We are hoping this difference might be the bit of luck we need to make this a successful cycle, in addition to the fact that we are transferring into our gestational carrier.

Greg and I arrived at the Highland Park IVF Center at 7:15am. It has become a tradition for me to bring Starbucks on these early morning days and Dr. Beltsos was kind enough to treat all of us this morning. I was a little nervous as to how this all would go with me not being the one undergoing the transfer. All of the HP staff made us feel so welcome and comfortable. The embryologist informed us that we had 2 good embryos to transfer. We transferred both of them and I was able to be in the room with our gestational carrier. They showed us magnified pictures of the embryos and even gave us a tour of the embryology lab after the procedure. Our carrier also received a post-transfer acupuncture treatment thanks to my acupuncturist, Nanci Bankier, of Natural Balance Healing Centers.

I am hopeful, yet scared to think that our only two embryos are inside of our carrier. Greg and I continue to pray that this cycle will be successful and finally bring us our baby.
This is a magnified picture of the two embryos that were transferred into our gestational carrier.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Fertilization Report

This morning we received the phone call with our fertilization report from yesterday's egg retrieval. Of the 14 eggs that Dr. Beltsos retrieved, only 5 were mature. Of the 5 mature eggs, only 3 fertilized. This was pretty devastating news for us. This is our last IVF cycle that is covered by insurance and we were hoping to have embryos to freeze in case the first transfer was unsuccessful. It just figures that things never go as smoothly as you want them to. Despite this setback, Greg and I continue to remain positive and try to remember that it only takes one embryo to bring us our baby. Tomorrow we will find out if the transfer will be on day 3 or day 5. Please keep us and our embryos in your thoughts and prayers.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Egg Retrieval

This morning was my egg retrieval. My mom came with me so that Greg would not have to miss work. He had done his part back in July. When using a gestational carrier, there are a lot of things that need to be completed ahead of time and sent off for testing and his part was one of them. We arrived to the IVF center at 7:45am and I began being prepped for the procedure. This was my fourth one so I am pretty familiar with the process. I decided to take pictures this time to document all that we are going through to bring a baby into our family.
Before the retrieval-my mom wanted to get the booties in the picture.

Before the retrieval-Dr. Beltsos and me.

The retrieval went smoothly and Dr. Beltsos retrieved 14 eggs. My mom took me home and I rested the rest of the day. The nurse will call tomorrow to let us know the fertilization report and we will find out on Sunday whether it will be a Day 3 or Day 5 transfer. We continue to pray and think positive thoughts that this cycle will bring us our baby.

Monday, August 8, 2011

A Family of My Own Conference-Glenview, IL

This Saturday there will be a free Fertility and Adoption Conference in Glenview, IL. It was organized by Preya Shivdat, the director of A Family of My Own Fertility and Adoption Conference. I learned about A Family of My Own when I was looking for sponsors for our July Birdies for Babies Charity Golf Outing. I shared our journey with Preya and they became one of our hole sponsors.

Saturday's free event offers the opportunity to meet many specialists and professionals in the area of fertility and adoption. My Reproductive Endocrinologist, Dr. Angie Beltsos, of Fertility Centers of Illinois will be one of the featured speakers. She will be speaking about Third Party Reproduction. Beth Heller and Tami Quinn, founders of Pulling Down the Moon, will be sharing holistic practices to use in conjunction with fertility treatments. In addition, there will be sessions for those couples that choose to pursue adoption. My friends, Katie and Pat Davis, will also be sharing their personal fertility journey. It will be a great opportunity for couples in all phases of the fertility journey to meet professionals and share their stories with others. There will also be a chance to win a free IVF cycle. You can register for the event and purchase raffle tickets at the following link.

The Chicago Tribune just released an article sharing information about the conference.  Please visit the following link to read about Dr. Angie Beltsos, The Broken Brown Egg, Katie Davis and my own personal story: For infertile couples, help and support.