Thursday, March 24, 2016

Failed FET

I have not updated this in over a year. I am sure no one is reading anymore.

But I need to write today. Twelve days ago, I flew back to Atlanta and we transferred a perfect embryo, same quality as the one that made my son. Today, I took a pregnancy test and it was negative.

This cycle was far from perfect. I had lining problems. I lost hundreds of dollars on airfare when I had to delay my transfer at the last second, because my lining was too thin again. Or was it too thin? I will never really know. My local clinic thought so, my Atlanta doctor couldn't tell from the grainy ultrasound photos, then he was gone on a critical day, and so I was delayed.

In the meantime, right after I was on estrogen for an extra five days, then given the go ahead once he saw better images, and after I re-booked the flights, I came down with walking pneumonia. I spent a week in bed. I took five days of antibiotics, overlapping with the five important days leading up to transfer and the medications I was taking for that. Then I lugged my exhausted tush down to Atlanta, when I had barely gotten out of bed for a week.

We transferred one perfect, five day blastocyst. And apparently it did not take.

I had a bad feeling, but I have been telling myself that I was being irrational. I had no spotting or cramping, as I did with my first pregnancy, but I know most people do not. The lining issues were a problem but then seemed not to be. At my transfer, the nurse commented that my lining looked good. I used such a beautiful, strong embryo. I don't know, and will ask, about the possible effects of the pneumonia, but they didn't delay my transfer and they knew about it.

So I think that the end story is, I just fell on the wrong side of the statistics this time. Even with a decent lining, adherence to meds, and a perfect embryo, someone has to fall in the failures.

The pain is sharp and numb at the same time. I held my two year old this morning and felt his warmness, and I know what a miracle he is and how he has changed my life. At the same time, I feel the loss of that embryo, that could-have-been sister or brother, son or daughter. I am staunchly pro-choice and I believe an embryo is not a child, but at the same time, it could have been my child. My much loved, much wanted one. It could have been a sweet, smiling, cuddling child. This loss is as painful as my first three IVF disappointments were. I am so grateful to have a child; at the same time, I feel the loss of a child in a more defined, concrete way. I know the smell of a new baby, and the first smile.

It's not over. I have four precious embryos left in Atlanta. I am considering: do I take a cycle off, or do I plow ahead, starting the Lupron again in three weeks? How much of a factor is this pneumonia, and will I feel better in six weeks for transfer- I assume I will by then. Can I wait and see how I am doing in two weeks? I think that is the answer.

Beta is tomorrow. I will get through today. In six hours, I will be holding my little monkey boy again. He is the best medicine, both reminder of why I am doing this and what I don't have but want again. Life is so unfair. There is no reason, no cure, nothing else I can say.


  1. I am so, so sorry that you had a negative test today, that the FET did not take. It is so hard when it seems that everything was perfect, even if there were glitches earlier on with the pneumonia and the lining. I'm so sorry you fell on the wrong side of the statistics. It doesn't help now, but those four frozen treasures in Atlanta are four more chances to fall on the right side of the statistics again. Listen to your gut when it comes to timing -- if you feel like you need to recover more from the pneumonia and this cycle, do what feels right. I am also staunchly pro-choice, but there's something to be said when it is your embryo, that you painstakingly created and are trying to will into existence when really it's all beyond your control. It's okay to see that lost embryo as a potential sibling, as something that could have been and wasn't, as the loss that it is. Thinking of you as you work through this loss and make your plans for the next try.

  2. Thanks, Jess. I still check your blog and am hoping for happy news for your family soon.