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My Successful Egg Retrieval & A Whole New Kind of Pressure

Successful IVF Egg Retrieval

I write this 12 hours almost exactly from the time of my egg retrieval this morning. I am still incredibly uncomfortable, but am loving the constant waves of joy and excitement knowing that the retrieved eggs could very well be fertilized.

For the most part, the retrieval went smoothly. Sara was there with me — though I was knocked out — and she gives quite the account of what the whole experience was like. Blood, tears, and the random unconscious ramblings of yours truly.

First, I slept terribly last night. The anxiety relief from my acupuncture session wore off by around 2:00 a.m., that or my anxiety was just so severe it couldn’t help but rear its ugly head. I drifted in and out from then until my alarm rang at 5:45, never fully falling back asleep.

On our way to the fertility center, I tired to stay positive and channel good thoughts. But I really was just a mess. I was terrified about getting anesthesia and not being “awake” during the procedure. Not that I wanted to be awake for it. More so, the idea of losing consciousness freaks me out. Couple that with being concerned whether my ovaries produced any eggs and if those eggs were of quality, and I was one shaky and scared woman.

By the time I was getting prepped, my heart rate was high. The nurse did her best to make me feel comfortable and relaxed, but it wasn’t until Sara came into the room and took my hand that my heart rate lowered from around 120 to just above 80. All from her just being there. I’ve said it time and again, but she really is my greatest source of comfort and strength. She continued to hold my hand through the entire procedure, even while I was “asleep,” and I woke to her right there — her face close to mine because I can’t see a darn thing without my contacts or glasses, and she smiled at me and said, “You did great.” It was the first time all morning I felt relief.

Sara watched the procedure wide eyed. She saw the doctor drain a cyst that’s been with me since we started this journey, if not before. And she witnessed the doctor successfully “suck out” the contents of three follicles with what we like to call the magic wand. There was a pedal on the floor at his feet, much like an old sewing machine, that created a vacuum-like suction when the doctor pumped it. From my ovaries into small vials went my eggs and some bloody fluid via a really thin, long tube. And she witnessed me tell the anesthesiologist that I love him and that “I’m totally wasted.” Awkward.

We weren’t expecting a large number of eggs since we opted to do a mini IVF cycle, so we were very happy when we were told two viable eggs were retrieved (one of the follicles was “empty).

All day today and this evening, I haven’t necessarily been in pain per se. But — WOW — is there a lot of pressure in my lower abdomen! It’s incredibly uncomfortable to sit on my bottom because of the pressure, so I’ve been mostly reclined since we returned home. We’re quite the sight, my wife and I. She on her crutches and me hobbling around with a sensitive lower half. The pressure is normal, so they say, so I’m not terribly worried about it. Apparently, it stems from internal swelling. I’m hoping it’s gone by morning.

So now we just have to pray that our donor sperm does its job with my eggs and that my eggs do what they should with our donor sperm. As we fall asleep tonight, we’ll dream of the first task our sweet little twinkle star has in becoming a fully fertilized and strong embryo.

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More of Aela on Babble!
My IVF Cocktail of Drugs & Hormones
While You Were Puking: Weekly Update on Pregnancy Medical News #2
Making Better Dads One App at a Time: New “Duty Calls” App for To-Be Dads Launched

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