Maybe all that acupuncture and wheatgrass and Pregnitude and CoQ10 and prenatal fanciness and no caffeine/alcohol and limited sugar and fish oil and all that jazz conspired to give me a bumper crop of follicles.
Because here I am, on Day 11 of stimming, and I have WELL OVER THIRTY follicles taking up space in my bloated belly. And, more concerning, my estrogen is 5652. Yup, you read that right. FIVE THOUSAND SIX HUNDRED AND FIFTY TWO. A new record for me, as when I had a lovely case of OHSS in 2011 that landed me a second go in the retrieval room for a pericentesis to tap me of all that fluid that had accumulated in my belly post-transfer, I was at 5500. Maybe 5600. But that was the last bloodwork before retrieval and I STILL HAVE A DAY OR TWO TO GO.
Nervous? Me? YOU BETCHA.
I am nervous about egg quality. Before when I had a zillion follicles, I didn't have a lot of good quality ones. So I am nervous about that. One good thing is that this clinic matures eggs in vivo, keeps 'em going in a dish, rather than discarding immature eggles. They get fertilized a day or two later. Which is insanely cool and weird, but it gives me hope that if they're not all mature those ones aren't lost.
I am REALLY NERVOUS about OHSS. Had it before, and it is really not fun. I honestly don't see how that is going to be avoided when my estrogen is this astronomically high. The good thing, again with the silver linings, is that I am not doing a transfer with this cycle. So apparently there are drugs they can give me to keep me from hyperstimulating too terribly and then if need be I guess I can get tapped again? Because now is not really the time to be so worried. All that fluid is in those giant follicles all over my ovaries. It's after retrieval that I get nervous, because after they aspirate the eggs and the fluid out of each follicle, guess what happens? The follicles fill back up with fluid, often more than before, and you are WICKED UNCOMFORTABLE. Thank heavens for narcotics. Count up 30+ (in fact, they said "well over thirty" at my ultrasound yesterday morning) of those babies and that's a lot of fluid. That then can start accumulating all around your abdomen, around your organs, making it hard to, you know, BREATHE. I am a super watchdog for shortness of breath. So far, so good.
I'm feeling a little conflicted, because I wanted them to do what they do and give me the best shot ever with this, my hopefully LAST retrieval. (I have one more in the chamber with this package, but MAN would I love to not have to use it.) But I was also nervous with the starting dose of 375 and I did not say anything. I did not challenge the directions because I wanted to be more hands-off, more trusting of the team, less of a control freak. And I'm feeling a little like maybe I should have said something. Because I become one hell of a runaway train.
My first bloodwork was last Monday and it was 379. Then it was 1000 on Wednesday. Then it was 2349 on Friday. Then, yesterday, it was 3600. And then today's whopper -- 5652. The funny thing is, I was only on 375 Follistim for the first three days. I got dropped to 350, then 300, then all the way down to 100, then 75, then 50 and now I'm at a piddling 25. Plus the dilute HCG stuff. So, either the high dose at the beginning gave me a jet propelled boost to the stratosphere for follicular development and estrogen levels, or maybe my body got a swift kick in the ass and figured out what to do just in time to blow up my estrogen. Who knows?
No one seems to be overly concerned--I have not been put on bed rest, I have not been told to do anything differently other than my changing doses and the addition of Ganarelix. Which stung a lot yesterday--I don't remember Ganarelix stinging. Today, the first real day of break, it was 80 degrees out (believe it or not this time tomorrow we will be in the midst of 2 inches of snow. SNOW. Rochester weather has a sick sense of humor), and I cleaned up in the garden. I am trying not to "overdo it" but I AM HORRIBLE AT LAYING LOW. I feel ok though. It was my only nice day where I could get out and do stuff until I felt too sore/tired to do anything. I worked for two and a half hours, maybe three, but some of that was sitting while I pulled weeds. Why the weeds have to come first I will never understand, but I got 'em early. But now I am worried. I am going to try to lay lower. No more gardening (it's all done anyway for now minus laying compost and mulch), no running around the house doing laundry (much), just quality couch time. I have all my books lined up, and my fun super intricate coloring book (don't laugh, it's really soothing and pretty, especially if you have ZERO artistic talent other than assembling and choosing colors), and I stockpiled some magazines.
I suspect post-retrieval recovery is going to suck.
But, what else is break for? I am just nervous that it's coming towards the end of break and if I do end up with OHSS, I may need more time off. Oh well. Que sera sera, right?
In the mean time, I will try to be more of a couch potato. I will try to relax and trust that Egg Boot Camp did its job and not only do I have quantity, I have quality. I will keep an eye out for shortness of breath. I will relax. I will relax. I will relax. I will hope that this truly is my last retrieval. Because I'm not sure how much more of this nonsense I can put my body through in good conscience. I have a tough, resilient little body, and I really admire what beatings it can take. But man, it's crying out for a bit of amnesty.
PS- The party for Bryce went smashingly well! A separate post on that one, because it was really a lovely time and I could almost forget that I was like a roe-filled salmon the whole time. He had a blast and he felt very loved and celebrated, and I couldn't ask for more. So more on that later, when I've gotten some pictures off picasa and I'm maybe not so full of estrogen and eggles.