When you do IVF there’s that first ultrasound. The one that will tell you how well you are responding to medications and how many follicles are growing. The follicles house one egg typically, though some can be empty and other can have more. Some follicles will be bigger and some smaller. You want to see a good number of follicles around the same size. These ones are responding well to the meds. Smaller follicles may catch up in size and produce an egg, but the larger follicles tend to get greedy with the hormones being injected and suck them all up, eventually muscling out the smaller ones. But it’s hard to predict at this point. All in all, this first ultrasound gives you a good prediction of what you will be able to harvest at egg retrieval.
It’s an appointment that women are usually nervous about. Will I have enough eggs? Am I responding well to meds? Will my cycle be canceled? Am I being over stimulated? That last one has never been my question but for some women, especially those with PCOS, this is a serious risk. So it’s a big day.
Today was that day for me. The ultrasound revealed that I have 6 large follicles growing and about 5 or 6 smaller ones. Okay. Breathe. I was hoping for more. Last time around none of my smaller follicles caught up. It’s so easy to make comparisons, but the truth is that each cycle is unique. I’m thankful to have 6. A common mantra you hear in IVF circles is “quality over quantity”. I’m reminding myself that worrying won’t change anything. I’m going to go with the flow and see what happens. I’m going to keep focusing on growing healthy eggs, and reminding myself that my future baby (well, at least the egg part of that baby) is growing inside of me right now. And that thought is amazing.
The night before my ultrasound I was starting to feel the panic raise in anticipation. It’s a familiar feeling that all women who go through IVF know. I had my favorite Spirit de la Lune card deck nearby and the perfect card was pulled for me. The Waxing Gibbous: Courage.
With courage, I trust the path before me to guide my steps and my dreams unfolding.
Women who walk the path of infertility are truly courageous. They face pain, uncertainty, and loss, and somehow in the depths of it all they find a way to keep moving forward. To try again. To smile. To change. To redefine success. To overcome. And so, with courage, I’ll continue on my path and trust that my dreams will come true.