I was equal parts nervous and excited for today’s procedure, as I’ve never had surgery before and I was more than ready to have my follicles aspirated (if only to alleviate the feelings of being 5 months pregnant!). Daddy Graham and I arrived at the clinic at 7, and he almost immediately was whisked away to do his part. Soon thereafter I was taken back to be prepped for surgery.
I was picturing one of those scratchy hospital gowns and an antisceptic room, but I was given a fluffy robe to wear (that was warm!!) and led to a spa-like room with a leather recliner! All of the staff – the nurses, surgeon, embryologist, and anesthesiologist – were extremely accommodating and helpful. The nurse joked that once the anesthesia was in the IV, I would wake up and ask when we were about to start and it’d be all over, which is pretty much exactly how it happened! The last thing I remember was having an oxygen mask placed over my face, and the next I was blinking at the nurse.
For the squeamish, you may want to skip to the next part as I want to write a little bit about what the surgery actually entailed. Once under anesthesia, the surgeon inserts an ultrasound wand with a slender needle attached. This needle will then go through the vaginal wall and into the ovary where each follicle is aspirated through the needle and the eggs detach from the follicle wall and are sucked out of the ovary. A few hours later the embryologist will insert the sperm into the egg, and then we wait!
Before we left for home, I was told we had retrieved 18 eggs. It felt like an omen – 18 in Judaism is a lucky number that means ‘life’. While we won’t know until tomorrow how many of the eggs that we retrieved were viable for fertilization, we feel incredibly optimistic. All we want is for one healthy embryo to stick! It’s amazing to think that in a Petri dish not that far away, our future Baby Graham is beginning his/her life.