In my last post, I mentioned how things had been pretty slow on the fertility front. Well, today we started picking up some steam! This morning, we had our first pre-transfer monitoring appointment for a baseline ultrasound and blood work, the first checkpoint in the FET process. Now, this is all uncharted territory for us since our last transfer was a fresh embryo transfer and this time around it is a frozen embryo transfer; but I’ll try to explain our process as best I can. I may have to defer to my human Wikipedia for the reproductive cycle, aka my husband, for help.
At this morning’s appointment, the doctor was checking to see that my uterine lining was thin and that my estrogen was low, around 50 to 60. When Aunt Flo visited a week after the retrieval, I started taking birth control to suppress ovulation, shut down my ovaries, and give my body a chance to reset itself, much like what I did before stimming in September. My husband and I didn’t know exactly what we were looking for on the ultrasound this morning, but we figured we needed to see a sparse uterine lining and some pretty boring ovaries. So as the doctor scanned over to my right ovary and projected it on the flat screen, I had a mini freak out when I saw what looked like growing follicles. Nervously I asked, “Are those supposed to be there?” The doctor reassured me that those were the follicles from the retrieval that had filled with fluid and formed tiny cysts – totally normal. Luckily, none of the cysts were cause for concern. Whew, right? Next, blood was drawn, and we each went back to work and waited on the call from Memphis.
At 2:00, I got the call that said what we were hoping, “Everything looks good!” On to the next step! For the next two weeks, my body will need to build a more embryo-friendly uterine lining. To accomplish that, I’ll have the help of Estrace, an estrogen pill that I’ll take twice a day starting tomorrow (3 times a day in week 2). Estrogen will help support the thickening of the uterine lining. And the way we understand it, estrogen also prevents the production of FSH (follicle stimulating hormone), thus continuing to suppress ovulation (more boring ovaries). That is, as long as it is administered towards the beginning of Aunt Flo. And that, my friends, means that Aunt Flo should be here any day now. What fun! If you didn’t catch the sarcasm, you’ve probably never had a uterus.
I have to admit, I’m a little nervous about the side effects of this new little pill; but because I’m such a hypochondriac, my husband has warned me, “Do not Google them, Breanne.” He claims that if I do, I’ll convince myself I’m experiencing every possible one. So instead, he has looked them up and can be the one that says, “Oh that’s just the Estrace,” when I complain about a throbbing headache (I didn’t cheat; I just heard about that one).
Once I’ve been on the Estrace for 2 weeks, I’ll go back for another monitoring appointment on November 9th to check up on, you guessed it, the lining. If it looks good, we should be able to schedule the transfer for 5 to 6 days later.
I know that was a lot of technical mumbo jumbo (or at least our attempt at being technical), so thanks for making it this far into our post! It’s crazy to think we are less than 3 weeks ’til the big day (barring any problems with our November 9th appointment). Emotionally, I guess you could say we’re sound. We’re a lot better than we have been in the past, even though deciding how many embryos to transfer has caused a little stress over the past few days. But, we’ve made a decision. And after giving it a little time to sink in, we’ll take you for a ride on that crazy emotional roller coaster. Until next time!