Tuesday, March 17, 2009

CCRM Cycle #1 - Starting shots

Today is a big day. And comically enough, I almost accidentally made yesterday the big day. There I was in my dining room, tummy swabbed, Ganirelix pre-filled syringe all cocked and ready to plunge when I thought ... now how much of this am I supposed to take? Turns out I'm supposed to take the whole thing ... but not until TONIGHT!! Dur!!

Happy St. Paddy's day folks! Too bad I'm not Irish (Polly McGamwich :-) and can claim the luck O'the Irish!!!

So, I finished my antibiotics. At CCRM I am doing the EPP/Antagonist protocol (the Antagonist protocol with estrogen priming during the previous luteal phase). I started estrodiol pills 2x daily yesterday and I will take those until AF. I have been taking prometrium 2x daily since ovulation to keep AF at bay. Last night was my last dose, so AF should arrive on Friday. Once AF arrives on Friday, I go in for my local monitoring (baseline ultrasound) on Saturday. Tonight I start 1 of 3 nightly Ganirelix shots. When AF arrives - that sets the cycle dates and I can buy our plane tickets. If all goes according to schedule, I start stims on Sunday morning.

Unfortunately, Berilac can't join me in Denver the whole time from 3/26 to 4/5. So I've asked one of my parents to come. My mom will be joining me from 3/26 to 3/31. And Berilac will fly in the night before ER (likely 4/1). I am SOOOO incredibly grateful to Daisy's parents who are graciously and generously putting the three of us up from 3/26 to 4/3ish. Then we will spend the weekend of 4/4-4/5 with Berilac's aunt!

As I mentioned in my last post - the plan for this cycle is to do the stimulation and retrieval and wait 6-8 weeks for genetic test results on the eggs. However, I have asked CCRM that if we only get 6 or fewer mature eggs at ER, can we convert to a fresh cycle? My thinking was that if we get 6 or fewer "testable" eggs then the numbers are so small it's not worth going to genetic testing. We would be lucky if 6 mature eggs yielded a 75-80% fertilization rate (4-5 embryos) and we would be lucky to expect a 50% blastocyst growth rate - so only 2-3 would make it to day 5. I am comfortable transferring 2-3 blasts (and I think it would be highly unlikely to GET 2-3 blasts from 6 eggs) ... but I know for certain I would feel regretful (as I did with the monkey clinic) ... if we could assume at least 1 egg was normal from a handful of eggs retrieved and rather than fertilizing the few we have, to lose all of them because of a sensitive testing and freezing process ... would again be so devastating. If I had more eggs to work with, it wouldn't be so scary.

So if CCRM is in agreement, there is a chance this could turn into a fresh cycle. And if that is the case, I would pray for a 5 day transfer and return home around 4/9 ish rather than 4/5. So really, if CCRM is ok with this plan, then I'm in a win-win situation! Here's hoping they can accommodate me.

I feel so informative in these last couple of posts, so lack luster. Honestly, I am excited to be going to CCRM now, getting my monetary savings, getting CCRM behind me sooner rather than later. I know that CCRM is an amazing clinic - and likely one of the very best, but I'm not thinking that this is our meal ticket. I'm just going through the motions, glad to be moving forward. I'm a little indifferent about the outcome, I'm just grateful that I have this opportunity. I guess a good phrase for my current situation is comfortably numb. I'm not doomsday and dark about the experience, I'm not scared. I'm just doing the next right thing. I am hopeful that we can do a fresh cycle, so we can go to transfer and leave Colorado ... not having to come back. I want CCRM behind me. Is that strange?

There were SO MANY expectations on my transfer in January. I guess that's what you get when you look forward to something and build it up for a year. In retrospect, I wouldn't have set myself up like that! (Heck, maybe that's why I'm numb going into this?) I would have had lower expectations. It's a safety mechanism I guess.

All said, I've got a lot of peace right now. I have been avoiding blogging and obsessive message board activity because life has been more interesting. I have spent the last couple of months enjoying my work, getting into a couple of good TV series on DVD, and just enjoying life. Friends have even mentioned a change in my demeanor. So I guess all the wound licking and catching my breath has served me well. I am grateful to God for this respite and I look forward to seeing what He does in the upcoming ... weeks, months, and years.

As for now ... let's get this party started!!

20 comments:

  1. Good luck! I start my stims on 3/25 and my dates at CCRM will be overlapping yours.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yes, lets get it started! I hope CCRM can make your dreams come true. I will be following your jounrey and praying for you daily.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Good luck! I hope CCRM is your meal ticket :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. So happy that you are able to take this next step and that you don't have to wait a whole year for it. Denver is an amazing beautiful place, and I hope you get the chance to enjoy it while you are there!!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Yay for getting the party started! Woot Woot! I think you have a good plan in place for the fresh cycle vs. testing if CCRM agrees - no regrets this time around and you gotta be prepared for anything.

    How generous of Daisy' parents!

    Glad you're feeling so much peace too.

    ReplyDelete
  6. You sound great! What series are you watching on DVD?
    Hoping and praying for you. Keep us posted when you can!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Oooh. Good think you checked your instructions! Good luck this cycle. I hope you get to do the testing.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Rock and roll, baby!!! That's so nice of Daisy to let you stay. WONDERFUL!

    Love E!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Glad to see you moving forward! Way to go on holding back on that shot! I totally get the "comfortably numb" thing...I think all the fight gets beaten out of us eventually...but, maybe it is a good thing. Maybe it means that we are stumbling into acceptance mode where we know it is all out of our hands and we will be alright no matter what happens. And, maybe that is the stress-reliever we need! But, still, I am excited about your trip to CCRM too - and I'm really curious to see if they will let you consider a fresh transfer possibility!

    ReplyDelete
  10. I am glad to see you have gotten some relaxation in, we all need it sometimes, to just take a break.

    ReplyDelete
  11. So glad to hear you will be heading to Colorado. It is beautiful there, so I hope you get to get outside, enjoy the scenery and enjoy your time there. You're doing all you can to put yourself in the best situation possible. I hope your perseverence will finally pay off. Can't wait to hear updates...when you're not out enjoying life that is!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Wishing you the best of luck with CCRM. I think you have a very healthy attitude--they are a great clinic for many many people, and I'm hoping you will be one of them, too.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Polly, it's so great to hear you sounding so... happy! I really want to knwo what DVDs you've been watching - I find a good set of DVDs lifts my mood immeasurably :)

    ReplyDelete
  14. I'm so glad you are getting started, Polly!! I completely understand "comfortably numb" going into the cycle.

    Know that I have everything crossed for you - fingers, toes, legs, eyes......

    ReplyDelete
  15. Best of luck! Do whatever you have to to stay the best space possible. Take special care of yourself. May all of us be able to look back one day with pride and joy and say: "It was all worth it!"

    ReplyDelete
  16. GL Polly! And btw, don't tell them that you heard it on the blogs, but I am like you in that I don't produce many eggs so I was always frightened I wouldn't make it to testing. THEY WILL ALLOW YOU TO CONVERT TO A FRESH CYCLE if you decide that you want to if you don't end up having too many. They just need to know what the plan is. For example, if you know that you want to do a fresh cycle if you only have 2 or 3 left on day 3, they need to know to prepare you for fresh transfer on the off chance you have one. If you want to push for day 5 blast biopsy for the test results, if everything arrests before the biopsy, they will still do the biopsy and sent it out for testing and only charge you $1000 instead of $5000. I hope I didn't muddy the issue for you - I was in the exact same position as you and worried about making it to testing. I wanted the test results...not sure if I would have anything to test given my poor response and fert rates. I ended up getting 2 good blasts biopsied for microarray + another 2 crappy looking blasts biopsied at our request. They're pretty reasonable and will try to accomondate you so just insist.

    ReplyDelete
  17. I am wishing you the very best with CCRM an your new protocol. I am also a lower responder and we don't even have CGH testing here in Massachusetts. I am too petrified to even do PGD because I have never even made it to Day 5. I have always had nice embryos (but 4 of them) on day 3...we transfer 2 and then freeze 1. I am hoping one day to make to blast. Good luck and I am looking forward to following your cycle!

    ReplyDelete