Baby Morgan's First Blog Post 📝
HELLO WORLD! 👋
It's me, Baby Morgan, coming to you from the womb! (See, I even included a photo of myself!) You're probably wondering how I can tell this story (and type) from Mommy's tummy....well, that's me and Mommy's little secret. 😜
It's been a long time since my Mommy has updated her blog, and now that I am on the way, I thought I better catch you up!
Since my mommy and daddy went through soooo much to make ME, let's first do a little recap:
2018: Mommy and Daddy started trying to make a family!
August 2020: Daddy found out he doesn't have any sperm after many tests and finally the TESE surgery (read about that here)
January 2021-April 2022: There were lots of IUIs (8) with donor sperm; a couple hysteroscopic polypectomies (my mommy is so brave!); one miscarriage 😢; and they finally switched fertility clinics 🖤💛
July 5, 2022: Mommy had her first IVF egg retrieval
6 retrieved; 4 fertilized; 0 embryos
August 30, 2022: Mommy had her second IVF egg retrieval
12 retrieved; 9 embryos (4 'fair' and 5 'poor'); 2 transferred
Ended in miscarriage 😢
December 13, 2022: Mommy had her third IVF egg retrieval
14 retrieved; 9 embryos (4 'good'); 2 transferred; 2 frozen
Ended in miscarriage 😢
Frozen embryos were abnormal 😢
Now that you're caught up, it's time to get to the juicy stuff! 🧃
Mommy did lots of tests while they were on hiatus from procedures and cycles. Even after so many failed IUI and IVF attempts, nothing was showing abnormal on her tests. The doctors at the clinic weren't hopeful, but they didn't give up on my mommy (thank goodness!).
"You can do one more round of IVF, but we don't expect a different outcome."
Mom and Dad had a lot of long discussions and it came down to one thing:
My mommy needed closure from this chapter in her life. She needed to know that she did everything she could to become pregnant with her own biological child. She knew in her heart that she had to give it one fourth and final shot.
Early in April, they let their nurse (I love her) know that they were ready for another round. The nurse told them that the clinic was currently scheduling IVF cycles for June/July.
That meant Mommy and Daddy had some time before anything would be happening. With my Mommy's amazing team of mental health experts (I love them, too), she made self-care plans: She was going to switch to a new anxiety medicine during this downtime of no hormones. AND she was going to try a different therapy approach to confront her trauma.
Spoiler Alert! They really didn't have ANY time! 🤣
The conversation that day went something like this. 💬
April 18 - Daddy: "We're going to be in Montana for my sister's wedding in June so wanted to get an estimated timeline of when meds may start based on Teri's estimated period."
April 19 - Nurse: "Hey Morgans! Do you guys have time today to chat?"
April 19 - Phone Call:
N:"So, we can actually get you in for IVF with your next projected period starting April 23. That's in 4 days."
Mom & Dad: ...
N: "We need to get meds ordered ASAP and a vial of sperm here like, tomorrow."
N: "And, Teri needs to get her AMH levels checked. Can she come in today?"
M&D: "OK, let's do it!"
I guess they didn't want to wait any longer than they had to to meet ME!
That night, Daddy had to order more sperm from the bank. The donor they used for the last cycle didn't have any vials left, so they picked their THIRD sperm donor of this journey. At this point, the sperm donor was the least of Mom and Dad's worries!
They picked a donor that checked as many boxes as possible and the vial was overnighted to Iowa City. Not quite like this GIF of the man with the cooler, but I thought it was funny to think of it like that - THE SPERM HAS ARRIVED! 😜
Mom made a lot of phone calls to the specialty pharmacies to make sure all her meds could get here on time and she went to the clinic to have her first blood draw of this cycle done. For those who understand this, her AMH level actually came back higher than the previous one. This was a great sign! 🤩
Like clockwork, Mommy started her period on April 23 which was the first day of Infertility Awareness Week!
They went to the clinic for the first appointment to help determine when the hormone injections would start.
That's a picture Mom snuck of Dad sitting in the waiting room at the clinic! She sure likes to document everything - I better start practicing my picture poses! 📸
The hormone injections do a lot of things like suppress naturally occurring hormones and stimulate my mommy's ovaries to develop many follicles (AKA mature eggs)––these are larger doses of hormones the body normally produces every month. Then there are injections to prevent pre-mature ovulation, and - when it's time - an injection to induce ovulation. And after that, there is another hormone that has to be injected every night after egg retrieval to prepare the uterus to accept and maintain pregnancy. WHEW! 😅
These shots have to be done on a certain schedule, so if Mom and Dad have plans, they have to make sure to take the medicines with them and set an alarm! This cycle, they went to a wedding in Wisconsin and had to sneak out halfway through the reception to go back to the hotel to do their shots. There is sure a lot of planning that goes into this!
During this whole time, the doctors have to monitor Mom's hormone levels in her blood and do a transvaginal ultrasound every few days. She made this photo collage of all the times she had to be poked for blood this round 🤣
OK...I'm going to skip the rest of the boring hormone stuff and get to the exciting day that I was made! 🤩
May 8, 2023: The Day I Was Conceived!
It will be a day for the record books, folks! Mommy's fourth and final egg retrieval was scheduled for May 8 in Iowa City. Not only that, but that day is also my Grandpa Gene's birthday!! How lucky am I that I get to share my Petri Dish Conception Day with Grandpa Gene's birthday!?
Per usual, Mom and Dad went to Iowa City the night before so they didn't have to get up early and drive. This time, they stayed at a hotel that had the perfect view of Kinnick Stadium (where my parents got engaged during a 2017 Iowa Football game!). They even saw a small rainbow above the Children's Hospital!
The next morning, they headed to the U of I Clinic and did the final retrieval! Mom had the same wonderful anesthesiologist she had the previous two retrievals and the same doctor she had from a previous retrieval too! She was ready to get this done and over!
She said the only thing she will miss about this is the warm blankets they bring on demand!
Mommy cried after the procedure was over and she was told that they got 12 eggs but only 6 of them were mature. It seemed like all that hard work was for nothing because there were not many mature eggs at all. The doctor said to her,
"You've done everything you can, and we've done everything we can."
While that made her a little sad, it also was quite comforting to Mommy to know that both she and the professionals had done everything they possibly could. It was a somber ride home for Mommy and Daddy from Iowa City that day.
But little did they know, I was being conceived in that petri dish in the embryology lab that very day! At this point, I was still just a twinkle in their eyes and a glimmer of hope in their heart. I couldn't wait to be transferred back into Mommy in just FIVE days!!
Thanks for reading my blog debut! Stay tuned for Part 2!!