As expected, my beta last Friday was negative. Zero, zip, nada. I quit taking my progesterone even before the doctor called me, because why waste the $20 each suppositories for nothing.
It was a hard, sad weekend. My mom was here and she just does not get it. She didn't say anything wrong per se, but she was fine with just having one kid and doesn't understand my yearning for another, or my sadness when I think of that perfect, lost embryo. So I tried my hardest to not talk about it, which maybe was for the best anyway.
Things I have been doing to take care of myself:
-letting myself just be sad, mostly on my own, in my own head. I have informed my friends who knew I was doing a cycle, though mostly by email because I don't feel ready to talk to most people about it yet.
-eating well but also allowing myself more treats than usual. I lost several pounds from having pneumonia but I predict I'll gain it back just through chocolate consumption this week alone.
-being sure to get 8 hours of sleep a night.
-after a frustrating attempt to find a therapist because my former one and two others are all not accepting new patients, a therapist neighbor got me connected to someone who can see me on Tuesday and I'm grateful for that. I need time and space to talk and cry and not feel guilty for my feelings or making someone listen to me. The sad part about where I am now in life is that my husband and I have very little kid-free time to actually sit down and talk, and he's not the best at this sort of thing anyway, since he's very focused on not giving up and just moving ahead. I am still stuck in the feelings of now. I had a great group of friends from my infertility support group when I was trying last time, but of them, two don't think they want another child and three did manage to get pregnant again with no intervention. They are good people but not what I need right now.
Things I haven't been able to do to take care of myself:
-exercise. I love and rely on the gym to make me feel better, but I am only 3 weeks out from a walking pneumonia diagnosis, and still feel a significant amount of discomfort in my chest/lungs. So as much as I want to go tire myself out with intense cardio, I am not sure when I will feel ready for that. I am not really a yoga person because I get bored and fall asleep, or would rather relax with a book or Netflix if I'm not going to be exercising anyway.
-really talk to anyone about this. Of course my husband gets it, as he deeply desires another child too. But his ability to be supportive is limited by his intrinsic nature of cheerfulness, and propensity to look forward to the next cycle instead of dwelling on the failed one. This is too hard for me right now, so we just avoid talking about it too much. I hope that I will find the therapist helpful next week.
My current plan is to take this month off. When I had the WTF talk with my doctor on Friday when he called with the negative beta results, he seemed surprised I'd want to take a month off. However, then he heard me cough, and agreed that some time to heal is not a bad idea. He did tell me that the pneumonia did not cause my negative pregnancy test, but these are precious, expensive embryos and I don't want to have any doubts that I'm not giving them the best possible chance, so for me that means waiting.
Another thing that came out of my phone conversation with him is a new, lowered expectation. I knew my chances of success with the fresh embryo were about 60%, but at transfer he had given me a 70% chance because I had such a stellar quality embryo to transfer. So I foolishly kept that in my head as my odds this time. And then felt totally crushed when it was negative. Dr. S told me on the call that with a frozen, the odds are only 50/50. That is much lower than I had been assuming.
So now we're in the place of paying another $5k, by the time travel and meds are included, for what is only a 50/50 chance. And with my third best embryo at this point. This does not feel good, but what choice do I have?
I am now on cycle day 5, and when I get my period I will immediately begin the estradiol again, and transfer will be around day 19. I'm a little worried this will fall right when I am due to be out of the country for a work trip, but I am trying my hardest to not stress until I know. I hope my period is early or late and it's a moot point, but we will see. I only stare at my calendar a few times a day, willing it to work out so I don't have to wait till freaking June to try again.
So overall, I am not in a great place. I'm eating into our precious savings, and finding myself too sad to look forward to things that normally made me happy. Of course, being with my toddler is still wonderful, but it doesn't make the sadness go away in those long hours I am trapped at my desk at work or during the long evening hours after he goes to bed. My husband keeps reminding me that we are in such a better place than before we had him, and that we have plenty of frozens left, but hope and money do come in limited amounts for me. I feel sad, and disappointed, and bitter at the unfairness. Wasn't three failed IVFs and one canceled one enough, universe? Wasn't having to forgo my own genetic child and pay for donor eggs enough? Wasn't my years of wanting a child enough? I am beyond grateful to have one, but as three of my former-infertile friends have gone on to conceive on their own, it leaves me feeling bitter and confused all over again.
Enough moping. I have a plan, and I am not going to pretend the next seven weeks will be anything but long, but I will do what I can to feel as good as possible. I hope therapy helps, and I hope this dark sense of hopelessness is not completed by another negative test. Sigh. This is so hard.