I have a very close friend – my closest friend, actually – who also did IVF to get her daughter. We were friends prior to IVF, but not good friends. When we both started struggling with conceiving, we got to know each other better and became each others’ support systems. We didn’t read blogs back then – we didn’t know about them! We knew about each other and we became each others’ rocks.
We had similar, but different, experiences with IVF. She was older than me and her first cycle resulted in just a few embryos and a chemical pregnancy. Heartbreaking. My first cycle, a short month after hers, resulted in 9 embryos – 2 which were transferred and 7 which were frozen, and a total and complete BFN. Heartbreaking. Her second cycle was cancelled before retrieval. Heartbreaking. My second cycle (the FET) resulted in low betas and an empty sac. Heartbreaking. Her third cycle resulted in 3 embryos – all which were transferred – and her daughter. JOY! Her beta was 566. My third cycle, four months later, resulted in 2 more frozen embryos (back up to 7!) and my beautiful son. JOY! My beta was… 566!
My friend moved on to TTC #2 when her daughter was just 8 months old. She’s turning 40 this year and really wants to finish her family building now. Her cycle was identical to my first cycle: 16 eggs retrieved, 9 great embryos, 2 PERFECT transferred embryos, 7 high quality frozen embryos, and… a total and complete BFN. UGH! As she was going through the cycle and it was a mirror image of my first cycle, I kept scolding myself for worrying that her cycle would end just like mine. Why think that way? But it did – it ended in one very disappointing BFN.
She did her FET today. I spoke with her this morning and we talked about thaw rates, etc. and she asked how our thaw went with our FET 2 years ago. We had a 100% thaw rate and we talked about our clinic’s latest thaw rates of 90%. We were positive. We were excited! She texted me later, just before noon, saying that she didn’t know much but that they were up to thawing 4 embryos but not sure if it would work and may need to thaw more. I called her, we talked about it being likely that all would be fine and she’d have her 3 remaining frozen embryos for “insurance” in case this cycle didn’t work. We were positive. We were excited! She then texted me post-transfer. They had to thaw all 7 embryos. UGH. We tried to be positive and excited – but you can tell we’re both deflated.
I will cheer my friend on through this 2WW and will remain positive for her. If her FET works, I will cry tears of joy with her. If her FET fails, I will cry tears of sorrow with her.
In light of recent happenings in ALI-land, the activities of my day remind me that you don’t need a whole slew of people behind you. You need a few good friends to get you through. Sure it’s nice to have the cheers and excitement of those around the world who have walked in your shoes. But those near and dear to you – the trusted friends who have been through it themselves and share many of the same thoughts as you – those are the people you need.
I am lucky to have found a new bloggie friend prior to the implosion of the ALI community. I will support her as she cycles for #2, and I think she will support me. I have two close friends in town who have both done IVF and we are as “thick as thieves.” I have my community – it may be small – but we are a true community who support each other no matter what.