Doorways to the future

I passed my clinical social work licensing exam!


We’re getting married in 2 weeks.

We will be snorkeling with turtles in 2 weeks and 1 day.

AND THEN I will start the DE process with RBA. If my calculations are correct, and if my menstrual cycle stays regular, we will have about 5 weeks after we get back from our honeymoon to finish up all requirements and select a donor. I would be able to start Lupron as soon as late July. And do a transfer in late August.


I’ve been too busy studying to let you know: I have, in recent weeks, allowed myself to look at pregnancy books again. I am able to touch them without feeling as though they are going to snap off my fingers and break my heart!

When I first looked at those books recently, I smiled and did not stop smiling for a long time. It had been years. I had literally hidden those books in the back of the bookshelf, spines facing the wall.

As happens (you all know how it goes) my mind is spanning forward and forward, calculating, imagining. 4 months pregnant at Christmastime. Baby in May. Transfer of 2nd embryo (because I am attached to that, even though I know there is no guarantee) a year from then. First child 8 years old and second child 6 years old when I am 48.

And so on.

To say that it is a relief to be able to have the imaginings and make the plans that I want in the blood-bulb core of me is an understatement. It’s like I’ve been wearing horribly uncomfortable shoes for 2 years and I finally get to take them off.

But I know I need to be careful. Things might not go according to plan.

We have decisions to make. We are, as of now, leaning toward a single embryo transfer. But if we have only 2 embryos, and there is only a 50% survival rate for thawed frozen embryos (meaning that when we do that 2nd transfer a year later, we might lose our baby’s sibling), what will that be like? And then my mind pings back to: double embryo transfer, now. But I need to talk to Dr. Shapiro about this at length. Maybe my stats are off. Maybe the risks of being pregnant with twins are far greater than I realize.

In any case, I am trying to get comfortable in this hopeful space. The ground is spongy and new. And I am hesitantly continuing to smile.

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  1. I’m glad you’re allowing yourself to hope and think positive thoughts about this! Deciding how many embryos to transfer is a tough one– definitely talk to your doctor at length about it and make sure you get all your questions answered.
    Congrats on the licensing exam, getting married, and the turtles! Sooo many exciting things happening at once.
    Oh, and I’m a social worker too ;)

    • Hurrah, a fellow social worker! You know, it has been so interesting to discover how many of my readers are social workers. Thank you so much for the advice and congrats.

  2. LH

     /  May 31, 2013

    Wow! Big things ahead!! Congrats on getting hitched & have a wonderful honeymoon.

  3. LH

     /  May 31, 2013

    Oh I meant to say congrats on the exam too! : )

  4. L

     /  May 31, 2013

    Dr. S told me that the chances of twinning are a full 50%, with double embryo transfer. But you should ask him again and see if that’s correct. With regular IVF, I never hesitated to transfer two, but then, it didn’t come with the amazing 60% chance of pregnancy with just one embryo… so I am leaning towards doing just one. If we only have 1 embryo to freeze, we’re considering coughing up another $10K to reserve another set of 6 eggs (I think it’s six?). We don’t have that money at the moment- we’ve blown it all on the refund program- but we’ll find it somewhere. Having the possibility of a sibling is important.

    Congrats on the exam and the upcoming wedding. It’s great to have so many things to smile about! Hopefully this positive feeling turns into another kind of positive later this summer too!

    • Thank you so much for the congrats! And as always for the information.

      My understanding is that the 30K guarantees only one live birth. So would you be paying another 30K (or 16K for the basic program) in addition to the 10K reservation fee in order to undergo the program again with another 6 eggs for a sibling?

      • L

         /  June 1, 2013

        You can pay $10K to reserve a second lot of 6 eggs from the same donor, if there are that many left available. Then you’d just pay the transfer costs (a couple thousand, usually- not sure RBA’s exact fee). I think that once I know these eggs got me pregnant once, I wouldn’t feel the need for a refund program so I’d go this route. Another option is just hope there are still some in a couple of years, or pick a different donor, and then pay the $16K program fee. But I’m not worrying too much about these details and decisions yet. First I have to see if I can even get pregnant once.

        • Darn—I just checked with the business office and the 10K reservation doesn’t quite work like that. If you get pregnant and have a live birth through the refund program, the program is complete. If you’ve reserved a lot of 6 eggs from the same donor you got pregnant with, you would have to pay for more than just the $3900 transfer costs (in addition to the 10K)—you’d have to pay an entire 16K basic program fee, too. So if you reserve eggs for a sibling, the cost would end up being about 26K +.

  5. Double congratulations! And so glad that you have so much optimism right now, with all of these exciting things happening! DE has very high success rates, so you should feel optimistic that it will bring you a baby (or two!)

  6. L

     /  June 6, 2013

    But that doesn’t make any sense! (this is in response to the discussion of the refund program). Why would we have to pay the $16K program fee, when most of that is for the eggs, if we’ve already purchased the eggs separately? I am not understanding this.

  7. I’m not sure why—that is just how it was explained to me by the Business Office. Definitely check with them yourself and see what they say. I’d really like to hear how they explain it to you. Perhaps I’m misunderstanding what she wrote somehow.

  8. L

     /  June 6, 2013

    I will ask when I am there next week. This is concerning. I’ll get back to you after I talk to them.


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