Thursday, February 26, 2009

ART = Witchidoctorification

After finally wrapping up my mega "prepping the womb" post, I'm trying to muster the strength to call the clinic to find out how many of the totcicles made it.

Yesterday, Dr. Li informed us it was looking like only 2 were making it. Though he was only referring to the first 2 vials. Still don't know the outcome on the 3rd. Dan was more crestfallen than I. Despite warning him that many don't make it, he didn't realize it could be that many. And Dr. Li even suggested he might do an assisted hatching on these two around day 3 if their progress seemed too slow to look like they'll make it to blasts. I had been harassing him this whole cycle to do AH, but on the expected day 5 blasts. He has repeatedly insisted AH is not necessary if they make it to day 5s. I was peeved he wouldn't just do it. From all my (granted, online) research, we're candidates across the board for AH no matter what stage the embryos reach. Another conclusion: day 3 transfers just seem to be a way to placate the woman/couple that sufficient efforts were made. If pregnancy is achieved through a day 3 transfer, the embryos would have made it to a day 5. In other words, if they're not looking like they'll make it to day 5, then they probably just won't work at day 3. By transferring on day 3, the lab/RE will look like they did everything they could and the BFN outcome will then be blamed on the woman/lining, etc. That stated, I will still happily go through the expense and expectation of transferring at day 3 if that's this cycle's outcome. I don't think one IFer would walk away even if what I contend is true. I do believe that the time will come when day 3 transfers will be looked back upon as an inadvertently cruel and manipulative hoax on IFers (don't ever forget we infertiles are part of the infertility BUSINESS. Business... Capitalism... Profit).

Along those lines, an interesting exchange to note: After the first IVF attempt didn't work and we were facing this FET cycle, Dr. Li bolstered our hopes by reminded us the totcicles we'd be using came from the same viable batch the first "hearty" ones came from. Cut to yesterday's phone conversation: "Now remember, we used the best of the best in that first round. And in the freezing and thawing process some don't make it and then we're left with ones that aren't as good as those first ones..." Hmmm. I'm thinking that would have been solid forthright information to share as we ramped up to take on this cycle. Luckily I, a.) don't trust doctors as Gods and b.) don't trust doctors as Gods and c.) educate myself as much as possible and d.) understand this whole friggin' process is just a crap shoot and e.) don't trust doctors as Gods.

Hey, I'm thankful we have any to possibly transfer on day whatthefuckingever.

As I've asserted before, we're all toying with witch doctory. Witchdoctorage. Witchidocitude. This ART is still in its relative infancy. There is SO much stupid luck involved. Put it in these terms: it's still in such relatively unchartered territory that they haven't completed the formula yet. They still have yet to discover how to get a woman pregnant, artifically.

They haven't figured out that darned i-m-p-l-a-n-t-a-t-i-o-n part yet. The genetic material may be combined, the lining may be nice and plush, the viable embryos may be floating around, but they haven't figured out how to make the suckers stick. And stick around for the long haul. No, it's not just us IFers who pray their baby stays put. Unfortunately plenty of fertile women must grieve losing their pregnancies to miscarriages. However, IF chip on my shoulder be damned, I'm thinking the expense of money, emotions, and time intertwined in needing, then using assisted reproductive technology, that they damn well owe it to us to get the job done. And they can't. Cannot. Not yet. Ladies, we're ART pioneers.

It's like we're hiring these general contractors who do what looks like a great job but then they leave the roof unfinished in certain parts. And it may rain, or it may not. The job is incomplete and we're at the mercy of the weather.

Since the verdict is still out on the third and final vial, I'm trying to muster this thing called bravery. Or is it courage? What's the difference again? Any? I'm so afraid NONE of them are going to pull through and we'll have to cancel this, our last stab at cycling.

In preparation, I'm going over 2 things in my mind:

1.) Dan and I have talked about talking about adopting.

2.) This whole blog would serve well as our "family album" in presenting ourselves to a certain sector of mothers looking to place their baby for adoption. Of course, that would only apply to one small facet down the adoption path. The other, more widespread avenues would involve me hiding this blog and us sitting primly as we're interviewed (grilled) with my hands demurely clasped in my lap and Dan's arm protectively slung over my shoulders, both dressed in tweeds with a dim bulb swinging overhead.

Have I mentioned Fuck the bullshit injustice of intense layers of investigation and hoop jumping prospective adoptive parents must endure (the "paper pregnancy") just because their bits don't work while the fertiles whose parts do happen to work... Weeell, since their reproductive systems are all guns a' blazin', that MUST mean they'll be bang up parents and lucky them, not only do they end up with a kid, they aren't scrutinized as if they're running for public office.

Have I gone off on that yet?!?!?!

URRRGGGHHH it's beyond frustratating that the prospect of "just adopting" can so easily amount to another failure--adding insult to injury to an infertile couple traveling down their last path to parenthood.

Which is why we've only talked about talking about it. We'll cross that bridge later.

Okay. Here I go. I'm calling now... and... nada. That's right... my doc is only in on MWF. I'll have to call again in the AM. Transfer tomorrow? No idea. Crap.

Where's my chocolate?!


  1. Oh, that sucks. I can't believe you won't get an answer today! Argh. I am dying to know, I can only imagine how you are feeling.

  2. I had to stop myself from reading ahead. I can't believe they have the nerve to be closed today, of all days.

  3. so agree with your thoughts...especially the one about IVF qualifying as still in the pioneering phase -- it still feels so much like a black art. try a little this, try a little that. arrrghgh!

    not to mention the paper pregnancy process ISO of perfect people who must prove themselves saints at best or above reproach at worst!?

    wishing you goodness on the next report from the clinic.

  4. Good luck on your FET. I'll be doing mine at the end of March.