After an early morning and a long, recuperative nap – I’m here for an update! As you know, I had my trial transfer and endometrial scrape/scratch. I also had the Femmebot (my mini cooper) serviced today, because #adulting. That isn’t as minor a detail as it now appears, because I know it seems superfluous. I am not often north of the state line and I don’t really know anyone here I trust to service the Femmebot, so I have to go to the only Mini dealer in the area. I knew I would be close so, OF COURSE i decided to double-dip on my trip to Memphis. Terrible plan, by the way. I scheduled my service at 9am this morning and made sure they had a courtesy car for me to use so I could go to the trial transfer. I was hoping they’d give me one of those brand new BMW convertibles to toot around in, but alas, they gave me a totally watered down version of the Femmebot with nary a trace of window tint. So i dropped off the car and headed off in this super milk toast Mini. <— I swear this will be important later.
Anywho – off to the TRIAL TRANSFER!!! I was excited. Nervous… I didn’t really know what to expect. This phase has been so very different from my Walter Reed experience. In a way it is more relaxed, which is nice. I feel like the burden of stress about everything that goes into this has shifted from me to the clinic. Maybe this is how this should always be, but at Walter Reed, I was the top-hatted leader of the most fabulous and intricate three-ringed circus you have ever seen, complete with spreadsheets, learjets, rental car wrecks and months away from home. I was in charge of knowing where to be, what meds to take, who was watching my dogs, when my reloving list of escorts were flying in and out and getting to the hospital AND keeping my husband as informed as possible. Which means I had to be informed as possible. I had to know ALL the things. And then do follow-up research to figure out the laymans terms of what all of those things actually meant. With my treatment happening here locally and on my body’s own rhythm, not a communal group of hundreds of people, it is a whole new world. I have more time to focus on my own advocacy and i can surrender my treatment to my ONE doctor. It’s nice, but unfamiliar so I feel like i am not…. doing enough? I don’t know. I am going to have to explore this later. Anyway, all that to say – I had just about zero idea what was actually happening today. Did you know that I might be immune to facial recognition software? Since COVID, the clinic has installed this iPad on a stand that sees your face and measures your temperature and then loudly announces it to the several suites surrounding the clinic. I’m not sure, but I think my mom in bartlett can also hear it. It also announces when it can see there is something there, but maybe it’s not human. Like me. There’s nothing quite like the humiliation of dancing poorly with an iPad on a stand in front of a whole waiting room of masked people boring their eyes into your ineptitude whilst trying to position yourself in a way to convince it you are, in fact, human. It’s truly fabulous and preps you for the later humiliation of stirrups. Anyway, I finally beat that boss after at least 3 minutes and was allowed onto the next level.
After all that failing, I was escorted back into a NEW ROOM! It was exciting. I had never been in the trial transfer treatment room before. It made the iPad sort of worth it. Like I had gotten a new achievement! Dr. Brezina came in and went over what would happen at the actual transfer. Confirming my identity and what we would be doing just like in an actual transfer, mainly to make sure they are putting the correct embryo back into my uterus and not someone else’s. It was then that i realized this would be the first time Dr. Brezina actually performed a procedure on me directly. This man, that I have seen for the last four years had only consulted with me up to this point. All of the other many, many procedures I have undergone have been diagnostic and performed by nurses or other professionals. I’m not gonna lie – it was almost awkward! Which is crazy! Because i have previously had my legs literally strapped to surgical stirrups in a room with no less than 100 fellows and residents and a 1000 lumen light pointed between my birthday-suited legs right before i was anesthetized. That was totally fine! I got over it, because he’s a stone cold professional but I thought that was funny enough to point out.
The point of today’s procedure was to make sure there would be no problems when there’s an actual embryo in the room ready to go. Don’t want my embryonic kid to witness any foul-ups. What problems, you may ask? Well, there are all sorts of things that can go wrong. They want to make sure that access to my uterus with an embryo catheter is uncomplicated. They want to know where they will place the catheter and, subsequently, the embryo that will be inside it. According to Dr. Brezina, my anatomy is perfect, in case you were wondering. Access was smooth and there are no abnormalities with my uterus. Great! Check. Then he did the scrape. Honestly – it was brutal. But not for a long time. And now my uterus has been resurface like a Kardashian’s face. This means it will be nice and vascular for an embryo to implant and find a blood source quickly and there will be no errant tissue to impede the progress of implantation. There was, and has been a fair amount of cramping post procedure and I’m doing my best to take it easy today. I’m glad I was cautious and took the whole day off.
Dr. B discussed with me the remaining concerns leading up to real deal transfer. I go back Tuesday to get bloodwork and an ultrasound. This is the last hurdle. The only thing that can derail me at this point is estrogen. They will be looking to see if i have any ovarian cysts, or follicles harboring fugitive maturing eggs. If any of that is found Tuesday, this cycle will be cancelled. Those things cause your body to produce estrogen and we do not want that. I have been on birth control for several weeks to suppress my ovaries because i have already done all that hard work. We already have embryos so the whole labor of ovulating and fertilizing is a little ridiculous and completely unnecessary. I have proven my inability to get pregnant. We aren’t really sure why, so we are just gonna blame my body. Which means my body doesn’t need to do anything right now – you had your chance KATIE, coach is benching you for a while. All of my hormones will be completely regulated externally with medication.
Overall, the procedure sucked but the news was great. Dr. B was super excited, he thinks it is going to go great. He said my embryos are as perfect as anyone could hope for and and the trial transfer was smooth. I will save post-transfer stuff for later because I have to climb that hill first. But we are full steam ahead for Tuesday. So, then i got dressed and went back to my Wish version courtesy car and sobbed behind my mercilessly transparent windows. For all to see. I was relieved but also it was you guys! I really had forgotten how gracious and supportive this community I have connected with through my blog is. I just sat there and read every single comment everyone made and was overwhelmed. I was brought back to all the struggles i have overcome and the ones i have yet to face and felt peace that i can do it. Still. It is HARD to be vulnerable. And it is hard to put my story out there for consumption. But it is a story worth telling. Every single one of my babies deserve their own book and to be known. People like me deserve to know they are not alone and to witness the support that is out in the world for them. I saw a lot of familiar names in my comments. People that supported me previously and it brought me back to each way they personally touched my soul last go round. And then I was shocked by how many new people were cheering us on, people that met me after my trip to walter reed and took precious time out of their days and read every single blog here. Yall! I’m just so in my feels about it. So, this is hard. And it’s going to be hard and I have more battles to fight – but you guys are breathing life into me and i can never repay you. This baby belongs to all of us, for however long or short their life is. And that will be true for however long I can continue down this path.
So, now that i have napped and have had the opportunity to reflect, I am ready to take on tomorrow.
I’ll meet you guys back here Tuesday 🙂
P.S. I forgot to mention our best ever IVF hashtag! This whole story is #OperationMilliKid and you guys are all in for the ride! Buckle up!