I didn’t anticipate how long it would take to recover from the egg retrieval process. I keep reminding myself that I had a surgical procedure, and my body needs time to heal. As someone who rarely takes any pain medication, I am discomfited by prolonged period of feeling “not myself”. Who wouldn’t, right?
Thankfully, I was able to work from home the two days after my procedure, and I rotated between the couch and the bed. My belly continued to feel distended and uncomfortable, as if imaginary weights were pulling it toward my feet. My digestion was just as altered, which didn’t help my feelings of discomfort. A close friend of mine had egg retrieval done the year before, and shortly thereafter we went on camping trip (which now seems absolutely absurd to me) and I remember that she was guzzling laxatives – I now empathize whole heartedly.
The day following the retrieval we heard that, of the 18 eggs that were retrieved, 14 were able to be fertilized! Daddy Graham and I couldn’t get over the fact that we were growing quite a brood in some nearby petri dishes. My fertility clinic prefers to do frozen embryo transfers (FET), as it gives the body an opportunity to calm down from the trauma and stimulation of hormones and surgery. That said, we knew that we would be waiting on pins and needles to find out how many of these 14 fertilized eggs would make it to the 5-day blastocyst stage (or blast) and subsequently cryopreserved.
Yesterday (a week after the retrieval) we learned that we had 8 blasts that were able to be frozen. Going from 18 to 14 to 8 may seem like quite a decline, but I think that we are exceptionally lucky. I did ask the embryologist for the “grades” of our embabies (I found this link extremely helpful), and we had 3 that were “good to great” and 5 that were “fair”. It’s hard not to get stuck on this grading system, but from what I understand, it isn’t necessarily a definitive indicator for successful implantation.
I am now waiting for my period to start so that I can begin the uterine lining thickening protocol (more injections and suppositories, yay). We are keeping our fingers crossed for a FET in August!