Three is the New Two

by DaniGirl on April 6, 2006 · 46 comments

in Frostie, Infertility

We’ve just come back from our consultation with our reproductive endocrinologist (RE), aka our fertility doctor, to discuss what we’re going to do with our frostie.

(For those of you new to the conversation, we have a single frozen embryo, our ‘frostie’, left over from the IVF that resulted in Tristan.)

First, the facts: the frostie has an approximately 75% chance of surviving the thaw. (This is much higher than I thought.) Then, given my age at the time of conception, there is a 13 to 15 % chance of the embryo transfer leading to a successful pregnancy. (This is much lower than I thought.) And I don’t know if this is reflected in the percentages or not, but the doctor said that embryos that were created in the same cycle that also led to a successful pregnancy have a better chance than those that were created during a cycle that did not lead to a pregnancy.

The minute I saw those numbers on paper, because the RE has this habit of writing down what she says, I wanted this embryo – this baby – fiercely, without ambivalence, and with my whole heart.

So many thoughts, so many feelings, so much to say… bear with me, this may be my least coherent, least linear post ever.

More details. Facts are my friends.

I will do this as a non-medicated cycle. Because there is no waiting list for frozen embryo transfers (FET) right now, I can call the clinic any time after June 1 to inform them it’s the first day of my cycle. From there, we do a month-long ‘test cycle’. I go in for blood work to check my estrogen level some time just before I ovulate, and go in for an ultrasound around the same time to make sure my uterine lining is nice and thick. Four days after ovulation, I go back in for more blood work to check my progesterone levels. Assuming the hormone and lining measurements are within the right range, the next cycle will be the one that counts.

For that cycle, I think I also do an estrogen check, and I’ll use an at-home ovulation predictor kit to detect the surge in luteinizing hormone (LH) that indicates ovulation is about to occur. Three days later, they thaw the frostie early in the morning, and the embryo will (assuming the odds are with us) be transferred into my uterus later that morning.

No drugs, no waiting – just a cheque for $1500, and more hope and vulnerability and anxiety than I can stand…

And now we roam from the factual to the esoteric. Here’s a few more details that are flavouring my emotional soup.

The clinic is moving in two weeks, to be a private stand-alone clinic instead of being part of the Ottawa Hospital. A sidebar note for those of you who have cycled at the Parkdale clinic: when we went through our IUIs and IVF, I remember being upset that patients waiting for an ultrasound as part of their fertility treatments had to share the waiting room and ultrasound facilities with the high-risk obstetrical unit. It was horribly painful to see those beautiful, fat bellies in the depth of my own doubt and sorrow and fear.

Did you know that the hospital administration recently dismantled the 5th floor ultrasound clinic entirely, making it necessary for patients to go all the way into the hospital proper and to the LABOUR AND DELIVERY ward to have any ultrasounds done? Can you imagine? Even for someone like me, who rarely grudged someone their successful pregnancies or beautiful children, who never faced the pain of an unsuccessful IVF or worse, a treatment that went to hell right in the middle, couldn’t have faced going to the L&D ward and hearing and seeing all those brand new babies every second day at the most crucial part of a cycle. Unbelievable. The RE said that was one of the main factors that led to the decision to be a standalone clinic.

Anyway, back to me. Because it’s all about me, isn’t it? The clinic moving shouldn’t have much of an impact on me and our cycle, except that the new location is a little bit closer to home, and a lot more convenient to get to, and to park at. This, to my view, is a tick in the “the universe wants this to happen” column. (I’m all about what the universe wants right now. It’s how I’m dealing with the whole thing, on an emotional level. If the universe, or God, or Fate, or whatever else you want to call it, wants this abstract concept of a frostie to become an actual living person, via me and my comfortable uterus, then so be it. And if the universe, in its ultimate wisdom, doesn’t think that a third child is in our best interests… well, I’m a little bit too emotionally invested in the concept right at this moment to consider that alternative. But you get the drift.)

And then the RE was telling us how a big collective of obstetricians, including mine, are moving from the building next door to the clinic to a medical centre about 10 kms in a direct line closer to my house, which would be extremely convenient – if I happened to get pregnant. Which really must be the universe trying to tell me something, right?

(Do you get the feeling it’s going to be a long couple of months? Yah, me too.)

So that’s where we are. In the “more than you really needed to know” file, (and yes, that file will fill to overflowing over the process of this cycle) my last two cycles have been 30 and 29 days, and my most recent day one was April 3. If I have two 30-day cycles, I will have a day 1 on June 1. If I have one 30-day cycle and one 29-day cycle, day 1 will fall on the last day of May and I’ll have to wait until late June to call in my day 1 for the mock cycle. Transfer will either occur in early July or early August.

All my pregnancies to date (three of them) have been conceived between May 9 and June 15. I’m not sure what the universe is telling me here.

Let the obsessing begin.


{ 46 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Batman April 6, 2006 at 4:25 pm

Wow! Let me be the first to wish you good luck…Good Luck! I wish you all the best and I hope number three is as lively as numbers one and two.

2 Batman April 6, 2006 at 4:25 pm

Wow! Let me be the first to wish you good luck…Good Luck! I wish you all the best and I hope number three is as lively as numbers one and two.

3 nancy April 6, 2006 at 4:41 pm

I am all set to obsess right along side you my friend. Bring. It. On.
GO Universe (and Dani’s uterus) Go!!!

4 nancy April 6, 2006 at 4:41 pm

I am all set to obsess right along side you my friend. Bring. It. On.
GO Universe (and Dani’s uterus) Go!!!

5 yvonne April 6, 2006 at 5:08 pm

My thoughts and prayers are with you. As hectic as three is, I cannot imagine my life without any of my wonderful boys. Let me know if you need anything.

6 yvonne April 6, 2006 at 5:08 pm

My thoughts and prayers are with you. As hectic as three is, I cannot imagine my life without any of my wonderful boys. Let me know if you need anything.

7 Renee April 6, 2006 at 5:13 pm

Oh, Dani, I hope all goes well. I’ll keep you and ‘frostie’ in my thoughts and prayers.
It’s all so exciting!!

8 Renee April 6, 2006 at 5:13 pm

Oh, Dani, I hope all goes well. I’ll keep you and ‘frostie’ in my thoughts and prayers.
It’s all so exciting!!

9 roxanne April 6, 2006 at 6:58 pm

Good luck, good luck, good luck! I hope everything goes well.
By the way, I love your blog!
roxanne

10 roxanne April 6, 2006 at 6:58 pm

Good luck, good luck, good luck! I hope everything goes well.
By the way, I love your blog!
roxanne

11 Kelly April 6, 2006 at 7:03 pm

I’m new to this (blogging that is) but I love your stuff and wish you and ‘frostie’ all the best. Three is a great number. And more fun then a barrell of monkeys.

12 Kelly April 6, 2006 at 7:03 pm

I’m new to this (blogging that is) but I love your stuff and wish you and ‘frostie’ all the best. Three is a great number. And more fun then a barrell of monkeys.

13 Phantom Scribbler April 6, 2006 at 7:14 pm

Wishing you the best luck in the world, Dani!

14 Phantom Scribbler April 6, 2006 at 7:14 pm

Wishing you the best luck in the world, Dani!

15 suze April 6, 2006 at 8:04 pm

all the best whatever the fates decide…(go frostie!)

16 suze April 6, 2006 at 8:04 pm

all the best whatever the fates decide…(go frostie!)

17 Janet April 6, 2006 at 8:06 pm

All the best of luck to you, Dani. I’m a firm believer in little inklings from the universe!

18 Janet April 6, 2006 at 8:06 pm

All the best of luck to you, Dani. I’m a firm believer in little inklings from the universe!

19 SheilaC April 6, 2006 at 8:33 pm

It all sounds very good, and very exciting. Three kids keep you busy, and it’s wonderful! Wishing you all the best,

20 SheilaC April 6, 2006 at 8:33 pm

It all sounds very good, and very exciting. Three kids keep you busy, and it’s wonderful! Wishing you all the best,

21 BeachMama April 6, 2006 at 8:51 pm

Lots to contemplate, but how fun that it will be so convienient for your next pregnancy!! I am already thingking great thoughts for you and hoping that your frostie doesn’t let you down.

22 BeachMama April 6, 2006 at 8:51 pm

Lots to contemplate, but how fun that it will be so convienient for your next pregnancy!! I am already thingking great thoughts for you and hoping that your frostie doesn’t let you down.

23 Heather April 6, 2006 at 10:24 pm

Fingers crossed! I’ll have a frosty mug to toast to frostie!

24 Heather April 6, 2006 at 10:24 pm

Fingers crossed! I’ll have a frosty mug to toast to frostie!

25 Beanie Baby April 7, 2006 at 12:41 am

(((Dani)))
You know I’ll be haunting this place in June to see what happens.

26 Beanie Baby April 7, 2006 at 12:41 am

(((Dani)))
You know I’ll be haunting this place in June to see what happens.

27 Kristina April 7, 2006 at 3:39 am

YAY! This is very exciting news indeed! Congratulations on this new journey – I’ll be sure to keep checking back for updates! 🙂

28 Kristina April 7, 2006 at 3:39 am

YAY! This is very exciting news indeed! Congratulations on this new journey – I’ll be sure to keep checking back for updates! 🙂

29 Danigirl April 7, 2006 at 1:28 pm

Thank you all so much for your hugs and wishes and crossed fingers. It’s hard to remember a time (scant hours ago) when I felt ambivalent about this whole thing!
Welcome, Roxanne and Kelly! Nice to hear new voices around here – not, of course, that I don’t love the old voices too…
xo Dani

30 Danigirl April 7, 2006 at 1:28 pm

Thank you all so much for your hugs and wishes and crossed fingers. It’s hard to remember a time (scant hours ago) when I felt ambivalent about this whole thing!
Welcome, Roxanne and Kelly! Nice to hear new voices around here – not, of course, that I don’t love the old voices too…
xo Dani

31 Kathleen April 7, 2006 at 6:14 pm

Dani – I’ve been lurking for too long. I used to surreptitiously read your blog from work, but now, fortunately, I am at home here in Ottawa and free to comment.
I’m revelling in my 4-week-old baby girl who was conceived in this fairly ancient body with a little help from the Parkdale Clinic (God Bless Dr. Leader and company) and I want everyone to be as happy as me.
I’ve enjoyed your postings, and look forward to more. I’ll be closely following your adventures with Frosty and the rest of the gang.
Good luck seems so lame a wish, but I send you my heart-felt best hopes for this and all your endeavours. Thanks again for sharing.

32 Kathleen April 7, 2006 at 6:14 pm

Dani – I’ve been lurking for too long. I used to surreptitiously read your blog from work, but now, fortunately, I am at home here in Ottawa and free to comment.
I’m revelling in my 4-week-old baby girl who was conceived in this fairly ancient body with a little help from the Parkdale Clinic (God Bless Dr. Leader and company) and I want everyone to be as happy as me.
I’ve enjoyed your postings, and look forward to more. I’ll be closely following your adventures with Frosty and the rest of the gang.
Good luck seems so lame a wish, but I send you my heart-felt best hopes for this and all your endeavours. Thanks again for sharing.

33 JoJo April 7, 2006 at 6:29 pm

Oh my goodness. This is so exciting. You have all our thoughts and prayers. I will go to church and “light a candle” for you. Hopefully I can channel those magic matches.

34 JoJo April 7, 2006 at 6:29 pm

Oh my goodness. This is so exciting. You have all our thoughts and prayers. I will go to church and “light a candle” for you. Hopefully I can channel those magic matches.

35 Laura April 7, 2006 at 9:24 pm

How exciting! It really sounds like things are lining up for something +positive+ to come about. Best wishes to you and the frostie.

36 Laura April 7, 2006 at 9:24 pm

How exciting! It really sounds like things are lining up for something +positive+ to come about. Best wishes to you and the frostie.

37 twinmomplusone April 7, 2006 at 11:48 pm

My positive thoughts and heartfelt prayers will be with you all along this new path.
“que sera, sera”
I’m glad to hear that Parkdale clinic is moving, patients will finally, I assume, be dealt with a little more dignity. Ultrasounds in the L&D rooms, how cruel, who set that up, some moron????

38 twinmomplusone April 7, 2006 at 11:48 pm

My positive thoughts and heartfelt prayers will be with you all along this new path.
“que sera, sera”
I’m glad to hear that Parkdale clinic is moving, patients will finally, I assume, be dealt with a little more dignity. Ultrasounds in the L&D rooms, how cruel, who set that up, some moron????

39 Jen April 8, 2006 at 3:22 pm

I’m biting my nails for ya, Dani. That’s awful about the clinic moving the u/s to labour. Mine was a standalone one in an office building and I do not think I could have stood a daily trip to obstetrics. Whoever made that decision has obviously never been through IF.

40 Jen April 8, 2006 at 3:22 pm

I’m biting my nails for ya, Dani. That’s awful about the clinic moving the u/s to labour. Mine was a standalone one in an office building and I do not think I could have stood a daily trip to obstetrics. Whoever made that decision has obviously never been through IF.

41 Miche April 9, 2006 at 3:33 pm

Warm thoughts, warm wishes….

42 Miche April 9, 2006 at 3:33 pm

Warm thoughts, warm wishes….

43 PhilosopherP April 10, 2006 at 11:58 am

I’m happy for you! I’m sure the frostie will find a warm home when he or she becomes a child!
I’m horrified by the idea that the hospital could be so insensitive about the locaion of the only ultrasound machine… probably men with children making the decision… no thought to the consequences, only the dollars. I’m glad your clinic moved, it shows they have sense.

44 PhilosopherP April 10, 2006 at 11:58 am

I’m happy for you! I’m sure the frostie will find a warm home when he or she becomes a child!
I’m horrified by the idea that the hospital could be so insensitive about the locaion of the only ultrasound machine… probably men with children making the decision… no thought to the consequences, only the dollars. I’m glad your clinic moved, it shows they have sense.

45 Terry April 16, 2006 at 7:02 am

Hi Dani,
I just discovered your blog; it is wonderful! There is an article in the Globe and Mail’s Focus section of April 15th on accupuncture as an assistance to other reproductive technologies. It might be worth looking at, but I am sure that fate is with you. Good luck! 3 children sounds wonderful. I have one baby, but look forward to more in the future.(also in Ottawa)

46 Terry April 16, 2006 at 7:02 am

Hi Dani,
I just discovered your blog; it is wonderful! There is an article in the Globe and Mail’s Focus section of April 15th on accupuncture as an assistance to other reproductive technologies. It might be worth looking at, but I am sure that fate is with you. Good luck! 3 children sounds wonderful. I have one baby, but look forward to more in the future.(also in Ottawa)

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