Category Archives: Transfer

Transfer & the Two Week Wait

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Flying into Vegas on Monday, November 10th, I felt surprisingly calm. All through the weekend leading up to my trip for the transfer, I’d felt nervous excitement. I’d double checked my packing list and suitcase five times to be sure I hadn’t forgotten anything. Now, watching the the lights of the city come into view, I felt calm and a sense of purpose like never before.

That night I walked around the Promenade outside my hotel and savored the sights and sounds. My RE was putting me on full bed rest after the transfer, so I wanted to enjoy the little bit of freedom to roam while I still could.¬†Brick oven, roasted veggie pizza and a lemon cupcake from the famous Sprinkles bakery made for a yummy last supper. ūüôā

IMG_1213The next morning I grabbed a chai tea frappuchino from Starbucks and walked to the Eiffel Tower in the Paris area of Las Vegas a few blocks from my hotel.I made a wish for this to be a successful transfer and tossed my penny. I thought it was a good sign that there was a little bit of France in Las Vegas since my IFs’ embryos were created in
Vegas for a life in France! :

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I¬†arrived at the fertility center and, after having my blood drawn, was quickly taken back to the “holding area” for those having¬†their transfers. I know fertility issues impact so many different women, but it was eye opening to see this in person. There was about five girls in the holding area with me and each one was seemingly very different from the next. I was sitting next to this gorgeous young woman who looked to be about my age. We talked about her IVF story and my surrogacy journey as we waited for our turn. Talking to her reminded me of how much of an honor it is for me to (hopefully) be able to help my IFs start a family they couldn’t otherwise achieve on their own.

Once it was my turn, I undressed from the waist down and was wrapped in a sheet to cover myself. My nurse coordinator had my IFs ready online using the clinic’s live feed so they were able to be a part of the process. It was exciting to see them again and see their excitement. They kept asking if I was okay and comfortable throughout the procedure. I love that about them… their caring hearts and kind personalities.

IMG_1256The actual transfer took less than 10 minutes. I placed my legs in the stirrups, got comfortable and then the doctor guided the catheter into my uterus with¬†the assistance of ultrasound. Once everything was in place, the embryologist brought over the two embryos and they were transferred to my uterus. It was incredible to be able to see them (technically the ebryotic fluid ) on the screen once they were placed inside. It was a little white line where there hadn’t been one before. The procedure didn’t hurt at all. The only part that was uncomfortable was when the nurse was pressing on my lower pelvis with the ultrasound wand thing. You have to have a very full bladder for the procedure to help compress your uterus and make it easier to see everything. It was definitely a struggle not to pee right there on the table. That would have been mortifying!

After the procedure was over, we said goodbye to the guys and the doctor gave me more instructions on aftercare and what to expect next. I was then moved back to the holding area where I had to lay flat with knees up for twenty minutes. Next, I was taken back to the hotel for my¬†my bed rest to begin. Even though the doctor assured me the embryos couldn’t “fall out”, I still basically tiptoed through the hotel to my room. Ha!

I spent the rest of the week resting and trying to stay as relaxed as possible. That was the beginning of the dreaded two week wait, which, for the record, is complete torture! The 2WW¬†is the time in between the transfer taking place and when you have your first beta blood test to determine pregnancy. I originally didn’t plan to take any home pregnancy tests during this time, but the not knowing seems so much worse then knowing something bad.

After being on bed rest for 2.5 days, I was finally able to fly home that Friday. True to fashion, there were plane delays that resulted in me not making it home until very late that night. I’ve never been so glad to be home after being away from my family for the whole week! ūüôā

IMG_1268I made a testing pack with another surro from my agency who had her transfer the same day as me. We tested on Saturday, which was 4 days past 5 day transfer. We both got negatives. ūüė¶ Still, at only 4dpt, we’re not worrying because we know we have plenty of time to get our BFP (big fat positive). I go tomorrow morning (Monday) for my first post-transfer blood test (not beta) to check my estrogen and progesterone levels.

Tomorrow morning will be 5.5dpt, and I plan to test again. I’m really praying for that BFP then. Please continue to keep me in and my IFs in your thoughts and/or prayers! They want this so badly, and the thought of neither embryo sticking is a heart breaking one!

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Linings and Shots, Oh My!

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I had my final ultrasound on November 4th and they saw the much talked about “triple stripe”! A triple stripe means that the lining is thick enough that the two edges of the uterus are touching in the center. I picture lips – like they can be thin and not touching, or thick and touching. The thick and touching is best because they are creating a really nice comfy sticky spot for your embryos. **See example below.¬†The outer contour of the uterus is outlined in red and the “triple stripe” endometrial (uterine) lining is outlined in green. The cervical canal is well visualized at lower right. Note: This is NOT my uterus, they wouldn’t let me take a photo of my¬†U/S. Boo!**¬†uterine-lining-ultrasound-draw

They wouldn’t tell me my new lining number either, just that it was above an eight and had the triple stripe they were looking for. I wasn’t a fan of this ultrasound tech and her lack of info!

My clinic called me that evening and told me everything looked perfect and to only increase my estrogen patches by one patch and make no other changes. I was also given the go-ahead to begin PIO injections two days later on Thursday!

Thursday rolled around and all day I felt a growing since of nerves about the shot I would be giving myself that evening. I’d read tons of blogs and watched just as many videos on it, so I felt as prepared as I was going to get. I will be giving myself my shots, so that also had me nervous!

Around 6:45 I got everything set up and read the instructions again. I iced the area I would be injecting and prepared my syringe. After icing for about 10 minutes, I cleaned the area with alcohol and then placed the needle against the prepared area of my hip. I’d decided that to keep my hand steady I would have to go in more slowly rather than the dart like motion many use. The needle went straight in with no problem! Whew! I pulled back slightly on plunger to be sure there was no blood, i.e. not in a vain, then began to inject¬†the PIO. WOW! Talk about slow! At first I freaked out thinking I had somehow done something wrong. It didn’t seem to be injecting in at all. I almost pulled the needle out… thankfully, I didn’t make that mistake. Instead, I took a calming breath and then looked closely at the line markings and realized it was moving after all.

Pushing the medicine through the needle was honestly¬†the worst part. Trying to keep the needle steady while injecting is hard to do with one hand when you’re self administering! I was so relieved when it was all finished. I sat with a heating pad for about thirty minutes afterwards and massaged every few minutes.

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After posting in a group about my experience, I had several surrogates comment that icing isn’t a good idea for PIO injections. I decided to check with my nurse coordinator for more information. Sure enough, she sent back the following message:

“We do recommend against icing the area before injecting as it will tighten the muscle and work against your body absorbing the medication quicker.¬†You will still absorb it but you will have a painful knot. We recommend to give yourself the injection then¬†apply a heating pad and massage. Icing the area may help the initial¬†needle poke be less painful but it will cause your muscle and the injection to create a painful knot. Icing is not worth it. Heat and¬†massage are your best bet against the knot.”

Needless to say, that was my first and only injection using ice pack! The next day I swapped to my other hip and didn’t ice first. I would say it hurt only a fraction more. What was really hard was trying to inject using my none dominant hand. It was extremely¬†challenging to hold syringe steady while still pressing the plunger. This resulted in the needle moving around more, so I bled a little after the injections.¬†I’ve decided I’m probably only going to be able to self admin in my right side. My partner isn’t really up for sticking me, so we’ve decided I’ll stick the needle in on the left side but she’ll actually do the pushing of the med. Maybe after a bit she’ll work up the nerve (and so will I) to stab me also! ūüôā

My final blood draw was Friday, November 7th. Sarah called and said all of my numbers were perfect and everything was a go for the transfer on Tuesday, November 11th! I messaged my guys to tell them and they messaged me and sent back a “selfie” and looked so happy and excited. It made my evening. They’ve really been fantastic with their care and communication. They send encouraging messages when starting shots or after appointments. I’m looking forward to this wonderful journey with them. ūüôā

I fly to Vegas on Monday and will be there until Friday. It’s going to be hard being away from my own family, but it will be so worth it if we get a beautiful positive pregnancy test on the first try! ūüôā

How soon did you test after transfer and when did you get your first positive?