Tenacity and Hope, Notwithstanding the Odds

When the LP and I found out Saturday morning that our five mature eggs had transformed into one ‘normal’-appearing embryo, there were tears.  And there were hugs.  Then a request (mine) that the LP give our solo embryo a name.  It could be anything – a person’s name, something symbolic or something fun. 

The LP named our embie Francine.  Our toddler has been watching the same 4 or 5 episodes of Arthur on an iPad lately.  I asked the LP if Francine was inspired by the Arthur series character of the same name.  He confirmed this.  

For those of you with no prior exposure to Arthur (myself among you until a couple of months ago), Francine is a tenacious tomboy with a love of baseball and other things non-princess-like.  She is passionate and opinionated (aren’t most kids?) and fun-loving.  It seemed perfect.  Good work, LP!

On Sunday morning, Francine had grown to 4 cells (good news) and we were told our single embryo transfer (SET) would be performed at 11:00 am on Monday.  I didn’t update the blog because I was afraid of Francine not making it to day 3 for the SET.  Call me gun-shy. 

I had acupuncture at the fertility clinic immediately before and after the SET, which was delayed an hour.  Try holding a full bladder for 90 more minutes than you originally intended. Not fun!

Before the transfer, Embryology came and spoke to me.  She said that Francine was 10 cells by that point (>72 hours post ER, I’m not sure how many hours post-ICSI).  I asked about quality.  Average because Francine had “some fragmentation”.  Francine was not “textbook perfect”.  I was crushed and flooded with anxiety. 

The embryology team member was so positive.  She immediately said, “to be honest, textbook perfect doesn’t necessarily mean a healthy baby.”  In my brief anxiety-induced stupor I did not think to ask about what degree of fragmentation or confirm that the cells were the same or similar in size, although Embryology never mentioned any issues with the morphology of the blastomeres. 

In short, Francine is growing fast (not necessarily a good thing) and has some unknown degree of fragmentation.  We have a chance. It may not be very high (okay, in statistical terms it is on the lower end of the spectrum).  But it is a chance. 

My blood test to determine the results of this process is next week Friday (January 17th – anniversary of my first D&C for my first pregnancy, which seems so long ago and not so long ago at the same time). Ugh.

I have tried to ask Azulito whether this will be the body he occupies but I did not get a clear answer.  I am afraid to ask again.  Instead, I will set and share my intentions with the Universe and hand over the reins yet again. 

May tenacity win the day.  May Azulito and Francine unite.  May Francine become a healthy fetus and the conduit for Azulito to come home at last. 

Wish us luck.  Please. 

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