Retrieval Surgery Day

Dreamy Dreams
I had a good night’s sleep. I dreamt that Gina and I renewed our vows and got married again. It was our dear friend Jill Wooldridge that married us. I also remember my computer chord plugging in to us somehow… (giving us power perhaps?). The dream left me in such an elated mood and I can only surmise that my subconscious is interpreting this experience of having a baby to a whole new level of commitment. I like it.

Morning Prep
I didn’t leave myself a whole lot of time to get ready because I had to skip breakfast and didn’t want to be hanging around the house hungry. I dressed in sweat pants and my comfiest shirt. I sat in meditation and prayer for a bit. I talked to the baby energy, the egg energy and the called the sperm to awaken.  I grabbed our chickens’ eggs for Dr. H, mac lip stuff, ipod and promptly forgot all the papers we were to sign as well as my Essential Rumi poems book. C’est la vie.

As we drove to the surgery site I listened to The Quebe Sisters, music that makes me heart sing. Then, coming down the Fremont Bridge, I spotted a rainbow! Auspicious for sure.

Retrieval Rainbow

When we got to the parking structure there was no parking on the main floors and I thought it was ironic (or something ) that the first time in years, we ended up having to go down, down, down into the deepest part of the basement. It was dark and damp. Sort of like where my doc was about to go inside of of me, eh?

Awesome Surgery Team
These women are incredible! They were informative, easy, compassionate, gentle and just so open. We asked all the questions we needed. They gave us lots of time together. And we even got lucky enough to chat with Allison, the embryologist (whom we hear is one of the best in the country! AND who also happens to be a friend of Jill’s – the one who I dreamt married us). She was lovely and funny and again, answered questions. She loves her work, they all do, and it really shows. The anesthesiologist was beautiful, too. She just prepped me perfectly.

Last but not least, Dr. H came in to say hi and I couldn’t help but notice he was positively glowing! Later I said to Gina, that it’s obvious that his real love, passion and heart is here, in the science and surgery of his work. He also is considered to be a stellar retriever (we’ve been told by more than one professional, including  Allison the embryologist) and transfer-er. He has higher numbers than anyone in Oregon and some of the highest in the country. To say we were with a phenomenally skilled team would be an understatement.

Here, meet our team.

Judy, lead nurse.

Allison, the embryologist extraordinairre

Dr. H, all smiles.

On the wall, there… just to the left of me in the pic above, you can see a picture frame filled with photos of fertilized eggs and the babies that came from them. It was so inspiring to walk right into. Here it is, full frontal below.

Embryos and Babies

I was able to walk in the surgery room on my own, just carried my IV. The moment I laid down the ceiling was spinning. The nurses got my legs in stirrups, schooched my butt all the way down to the end of the table and asked me where I’d like to go. Africa, I said! They started chatting about Africa when, I said, “I’m just gonna close my eyes for a minute.”

The next thing I knew I was back in the room where I started. What? “Is it over?” Yep. It was. So fast! Seemed like just one minute. In reality it was about 25 minutes. Just enough time for sweet Gina to get a coffee and bagel and make it back and be with me.

“We got 18 eggs! That’s really great! We have some young 21 year old donors come in and not get that many!” Needless to say, I was thrilled about this. Still though, what will really matter is how many are viable and we are prepared that perhaps only half of those will be. Tomorrow morning we’ll get a call to tell us how many fertilized. Of course, we are looking forward to learning that information.

Post Surgery
I rested and recouped for about an hour there. I was definitely in more pain that I anticipated. I was pretty dizzy, groggy and tired. And I felt no less “full” like I thought I might. In fact, they told me that the follicles fill back up with fluid quickly, plus I’ll be swollen. I’m drinking cinnamon  tea to help drain the fluid.

By 12:30 we headed home. Gina got me all settled in bed then went to go pick up the pain med prescription, electrolytes and food for us. She also brought me flowers. I can’t tell you how happy this little gesture made me. Just so, so sweet. I rested in silence for a bit then spoke to my mom briefly.

Flowers from my Love.

The rest of the day has been spent resting.  I’ve been great about staying off email and phone and such. I’m still hurting more than I expected (perhaps because there we so many follicles that they were likely very swollen and then poked and drained). Strange, my ovaries and lower abdomen hurt more (pretty intensely actually) when I need to pee or when I eat. It’s like there’s not enough room for all those things down there with the swollen ovaries. So, I’m eating in bits and peeing often. But let’s not get crazy on bravery, those good pain killers and tylenol help. A lot.

Next Steps
Tomorrow I go to a pretty full day of work. I hope I’ll feel okay but my work is not physically strenuous and I am deeply fed by it.

We’ll get a call between 9-10 on the number of fertilized eggs. Then, I’ll start a new round of medications (all oral, no shots) and then rest up, take care of a few things I couldn’t the past few weeks nor will be able to after the transfer (i.e. coloring my hair, last teeth whitening, some heavier yard work).

Last but not least….

A Special Note on My Wife
Gina has been extraordinary. In the truest sense of the word. I’m a little shy that it might sound all cheesy or braggy or something, but the truth is, I feel so happy and lucky that I found her and get her. I think that fight we had a few weeks ago was really productive and necessary. We worked some good stuff out and I feel more in love with her than ever. Apparently she feels the same.

All along the way today she’s met needs before I had to ask. And when she wasn’t sure, she asked… even little things, like what way I felt most comfortable driving home (road was bumpy I was in pain). She’s held my hands, breathed with me, prayed with me and loved me up like no other. She’s made each meal, asked how I feel and thanked me and honored me for going through this for us. Pretty groovy, right?

And it’s made such a difference in my whole experience (and healing). Even though I’m not feeling so hot, I feel so full and happy in my heart I could burst. Today we looked at each other with love and a kiss and a hug and I thought to myself, “This is why we’ve been called to wait so long, we needed to get here. Here to this place of super love. This child wants this.” People have been kind enough to say over the years that we are going to be really great parents and I had small moments of taking that in. Today, for the first time, I have really believed that not just in a moment but for good.

So, come on baby!

Thank You
I’m no fool. I know my heart is not only bursting because of how Gina is loving me. I know my heart is bursting because of ALL your prayers. I feel them. I really do. I feel so different. So held. I feel light. I feel loved. And I feel calm, without worry, about those little embryos growing for I know they are in your prayers to.

I feel totally vulnerable receiving this much love and prayer. Yet again, another opportunity to let go, surrender and receive. What Danielle (my reader-friend) said way back in November and right from the start. So, I’ll do my work and just keep receiving.

And so, I thank you.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

*Note: Below are just a few more pics from the day…enjoy.

Eggs for Dr. H and Allison


On our way there...

On our way, rainbow was right there behind me.

Before surgery...I've never been so happy before a surgery!



Post surgery. The least flattering photo ever. BUT, it so clearly captures all the joy and emotion I felt, I couldn't not share it with you.


On our slow walk out, we saw the little "deposit room" that the male partners use. Note the little door they pass their sperm juice through.


This entry was posted in Believing, Chickens, Drugs and Medications, Eggs and Embryos, Firsts, Praying, Surgeries and Proceedures, What the ?. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s