You know how thoughts just roll around while you take a shower? At some point in the middle of washing my hair yesterday, I realized that I had been anticipating a scenario where the doctors wouldn’t want us to transfer all of our embryos and mentally marshaling the arguments I would present to persuade them or force them to comply with our wishes. I stopped short, recognizing that those thoughts showed that my heart was full of anxiety.
I tried instead to pray and to speak truth to myself. I reminded myself that I didn’t even know at that point how many embryos we had, so I might have been preparing for a non-existent battle. Instead of thinking up ways to put the doctors in their place if they balked at the principles that we’ve made clear from the start, I prayed that God would soften their hearts. I took time to rehearse the truth of God’s sovereignty; he knew our embryos, he sustained just the right number, and he would make a way to honor those little lives by transferring them into the womb.
So how did the transfer actually go?
When Aaron and I got to the clinic, we first met with the embryologist. He showed us pictures of our embryos from day one on, explaining the progress of development and their grades. When he got to the last row of pictures, he pointed out how one had arrested at 8 cells and three had continued to grow to blastocyst* stage. Those three were graded A-, B+ and C.
“So,” he said, “how many do we want to transfer? Three?”
Spluttering a bit in shock that this would simply be offered, with no cautions or hesitations (reproductive medicine guidelines recommend transferring no more than one blastocyst in women under 30), we replied, “Yes. Yes, we would like to transfer all three.”
“And what if you end up with triplets?” the embryologist asked.
“Then we pray for help with triplets!” I said, smiling.
“Okay, good luck to you. Wish me good luck, too.” And he left to prepare the embryos for transfer.
Shortly thereafter, the nurse to me back to prep for the transfer myself. Once she had me all set, she called for the RE, Dr. Werthers, to come in. I wondered if he would protest the three-blastocyst transfer. But no.
Walking in, he said, “Hello, Andrea. So, we are transferring three today?”
“Yes,” I said, “I’m very excited.”
“Good,” he commented, patting my knee.
And that was that. We transferred all three, I rested for a bit at the clinic, and they sent me home with instructions to stay on bedrest for two days.
I’ve been continuously praising God for making the whole process so easy, thanking him for sustaining the lives of these three embryos, and asking him to cause one of more of them to implant. Now the real waiting begins…
*If you’re not immersed in the world of IVF, here’s a link showing embryo development to blastocyst stage (note: the link is not from my doctor or clinic).